There are a host of lingering challenges that account for people failing to optimize their web scraping campaigns. This underscores the fact that while web scraping is an activity that requires minimal intervention when setting up properly but does require supervision, especially when such hurdles manifest themselves.
What’s good is that there are a lot of web scraping tools that actively help their users address them. People who rely on a competent free web scraper like Octoparse, for example, can definitely attest to the active support it is giving its users in this regard through regular updates and guidance.
We have listed down the most prevalent ones and have provided the best ways to overcome them as well.
1. Captcha Puzzles
These puzzles usually take the form of checkboxes confirming you are not a robot, selecting a set of images that depict a particular object, solving equations, or typing a mix of numbers and letters. Most of them are fairly easy for a human to solve, but this is definitely not the case for a standard web scraping software, web crawler, or website downloader.
That said, an exception can be made for savvy companies that are able to use advanced programming skills to solve these Captcha challenges without human intervention. Of course, not everyone has this technical know-how? How then should you solve it?
The Solution: As far as taking care of the Captcha stumbling block, it’s better to actually just rely a whole lot on prevention – meaning you do your best not to trigger them. This usually entails adjusting the speed of the data extraction or introducing a random pattern to it. Try to experiment on the delays you add and try to make it as close to human-like as possible.
2. IP Addresses
Web scrapers need to also be mindful of the IP address they are using when performing their activities because using only a single often leads to it being blacklisted. And, as far as web scraping endeavors go, a blocked IP will grind it to complete halt.
This is why you should never do any sort of web scraping if your internet provider has only provided you with a static IP address. Otherwise, your IP will be associated with the botting activity. What do anti-scraping look at when gauging what should get blocked? Well, the two main factors are the number of visits and how often they occur.
The Solution: There are numerous ways to address this. For one, you can also just slow down your scraping activity or set a delay. You can also rely on a proxy provider, which is practically a necessity if you mean to do any Choose a proxy service that can provide you with advanced rotating IP services like Luminati.
UA for short, these are headers that track the behavior of users when visiting websites. It will immediately gather information from you such as OS, browser, CPU type, to cite a few. A web crawler without a header will tend to be detected for what it is: just a script. Consequently, this leads to instant blocking. Take note that every user-agent is unique for every browser you are using.
The Solution: The best way to solve this is to disguise your script as an actual user agent. You can set a user agent for the web scraper and be sure to do this regularly. You can’t let use a UA for an extensive amount of time as this inevitably results in blocks.
4. Required Logins
Many websites now require users to log in for them to gain access to their content. This also applies to social media websites like Facebook. This is also a very effective deterrent to most web scraping tools because requiring to log in to an account readily connotes a human connection. That said, you definitely have to have an account on the website you mean to scrape data from before you perform the solution to this.
The Solution: Use a tool that can help your bot simulate the mouse and keyboard operations involved when logging in. This includes the process of clicking on the text box, entering the username/email and password, and clicking the ‘Login’ button. Afterward, save the cookies (assuming the website is allowing them), so the bot will not have to repeat the login procedure again.
Read Full Article Here – Bypass Captcha, IP’s, Logins and User Agents With One Simple Trick