"Friendly Bots," a new means to validate an online bot's identity, has been introduced by Cloudflare.
Through the Cloudflare dashboard, users will be able to "auto verify" bot traffic. Users can offer information about a bot, which will help the organization better verify bots based on their traffic.
"Previously, we needed bot operators (such as Google) to submit their verification data," the company explained. "If you wanted to verify a bot you didn't own, you were out of luck. Friendly Bots removes this reliance on bot operators by allowing anyone with identifying information to register a bot on their site."
Bots are known as web apps that are designed to do certain, repetitive tasks without the need for human intervention.
Many bots are programmed to perform useful activities such as crawling web sites for analytics, processing payments, interacting with website visitors and offering advice or directing them to the appropriate customer service department. The "bad" bots can be used to scrape user data, distribute spam, flood a domain with traffic and disrupt services (DoS/DDoS attacks), or try automatic account access (credential stuffing).
To prevent malicious bots from wreaking havoc on the internet, several online service providers use allow and deny lists to prevent known harmful bots from accessing resources.
Bots are typically checked using public forms and documentation offered by a developer, which includes IP addresses (static or dynamic), rDNS, user agents, and machine learning (ML), which employs sophisticated algorithms to recognize trends in bot behavior and characterize the innocent.
Meanwhile, Cloudflare thinks that by classifying a bot as "friendly" while it is being validated, it will reduce the amount of legwork and time required for decent bots to be approved.
Friendly Bots will be available soon, according to Cloudflare, it will decrease false positives, increase crawl-ability, and overall stabilize sites. Verified bots will also be added to Cloudflare Radar's Logs feature.