Microsoft: Google Manipulated Bing Search Through “Click Fraud”

Posted Feb 2, 2011

Microsoft Senior Vice President of the Online Services Division Yusuf Mehdi took some time today to clarify Google’s accusations about Bing copying their search results. Mehdi said that Bing does not copy results from competitors ever.

“Google engaged in a ‘honeypot’ attack to trick Bing. In simple terms, Google?s ‘experiment’ was rigged to manipulate Bing search results through a type of attack also known as ‘click fraud.’ That?s right, the same type of attack employed by spammers on the web to trick consumers and produce bogus search results. What does all this cloak and dagger click fraud prove? Nothing anyone in the industry doesn?t already know. As we have said before and again in this post, we use click stream optionally provided by consumers in an anonymous fashion as one of 1,000 signals to try and determine whether a site might make sense to be in our index.”

Mehdi had also pointed out that Google copied a few features from Bing such as infinite scroll in image search, travel and shopping features, and a visual approach to searching with a Facebook and Twitter partnership.