Web scraping refers to the extraction of data from websites by a bot or a web crawler. While it's a common practice in some business sectors, it has significant implications when conducted over shared VPN servers, such as ours.
One of the issues that web scraping creates is an increased rate of CAPTCHA requests. You might have faced a situation where you're asked to verify that you're not a robot by solving a puzzle or clicking on images. This happens more frequently when a server is detected to be performing automated tasks, like web scraping.
Increased CAPTCHA prompts don't just cause a minor inconvenience. They significantly disrupt your browsing experience. Whether you're in the middle of a work task or a relaxing movie night, no one wants to be interrupted by regular requests to prove their humanity!
Moreover, frequent web scraping from a VPN subnet can lead to search engines such as Google adding the subnet to their blocklists. When this happens, every user connected to our VPN service through that subnet will experience limited accessibility or even complete unavailability of services, impacting the reliability of our VPN.
Replacing these subnets is not only costly but also time-consuming. It consumes resources we could use to enhance the service experience for all our users.
That's why we have systems to detect patterns consistent with web scraping and enforce our terms of service. We do not log user data, and these systems do not infringe upon the privacy of our customers — they merely allow us to maintain the quality of our service.