I am always amazed at some really sloppy antics, whether by the site owners or by their web developers. One of the main culprits (which brings me some moments of mild amusements) is a business leaving their web statistics out there for all to see. Not that the information therein is massively sensitive – but it’s sloppy and can benefit others. There are particular statistical application that would tend to future on the offenders list.

Business is tight and business is hard to get. So why do companies insist in giving their competition an insight into their web business: pages viewed, referring sites, keywords and phrases used to get to the site! All this information is useful to your competition or someone working with the competition.

Below are pages, indexed by Google and Co, up there for the world to see, to study and in some places benefit from. Why tell the competition which site gives you the most referrals or which keywords are the best for traffic? All that’s going to happen there is that the competition will use this to their advantage.

Shop on Grafton Street had a good December and the site was busy January and February:

Another retail unit on Grafton Street (which was not gathering data in January and part of February)

Dublin Hotel: I did a bit of work for a competitor and wished I had seen that then – very handy for the referrals and the keywords, especially in such a competitive environment:

And finally, if you are thinking of going into the ‘girly’ business I can tell you a few things after studying these details. The days after a bank holiday are particularly busy and keywords are normally branded! However it looks like the recession is good for business:

Honest it’s the stats for a, well, a em, – well it’s not a dating agency (although I did have access to dating agency stats as well)

The real point here is that if you have to have web pages on a web server and you don’t want the world to see them the answers are simple: deny access and password protect to the stats folder via a htaccess file, robots text excludes the bots and just for good measure “no index” the files so that they don’t appear in the search engines.