Got this e-mail today. Addresses redacted, but otherwise verbatim:
|Subject: Link removal request|
|From: Rodger Lodge <email@example.com>|
|Date: 14-01-27 08:46 AM|
|To: abuse@my hosting company.com, me, hostmaster@my hosting company.com|
We have recently received a notification from Google stating that our website has unnatural links pointing towards it. This has really damaged our rankings on Google and as a result, we’re trying to clear things up.
Our website url is www.entrust.net.
We noticed the following links are pointing to our website from your site:
I appreciate this is inconvenient and isn’t a reflection on your website at all, but if you’re able to remove the links, we would really appreciate it and would be very grateful.
I look forward to hearing from you.
So, one of the prime security companies (I’m strongly resisting the urge to link to them here, but I’m above that) is using gmail to send out official notices? Why not a securely signed e-mail from their .net domain? That might be more legit. Also, sending me a copypasta response lifted from the “Ultimate Guide to Google Penalty Removal” seems a little … gauche.
If this is for real, then I’m annoyed. I wrote the original article in 2006 in an attempt to help Mac users get work done with a popular remote-access package. I’m not dissing the company in any way: I’m helping people use their products better. Linking is not abuse.
It’s probably just spam, though.
Update: Nope, not spam. Got an apology by e-mail from Nate Plaunt of Online Performance Marketing, saying: “This was an automated email generated by this digital agency and your sites were mistakenly targeted”. Still no apology for the e-mail to abuse@…, tho’. That’s never an acceptable first communication.