Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Secret Messages Via HTTP Referrer

Here's how you can send me secret messages. Do an Advanced Google Search for "Adventures of BruteForce" and include your secret message in quotes where there is the unwanted words field. You can also use Yahoo! or other search engines in a similar manner.

Now click on any link that shows up that leads to any of this blog's pages.

Once you do that, I should be able to see the HTTP Referrer URL when I look at the blog's traffic logs. I sent myself a couple secret messages using this technique. Here they are.

February 2nd 201008:50:37 PMwww.google.com/search?hl=en&as_q=adventures of bruteforce&as_epq=&as_oq=&as_eq=%22this is a secret message%22&num=10&lr=&as_filetype=&ft=i&as_sitesearch=&as_qdr=all&as_rights=&as_occt=any&cr=&as_nlo=&as_nhi=&safe=images

February 2nd 201008:52:15 PMsearch.yahoo.com/search?p=adventures of brute force -%22another secret message%2C this time from yahoo%21%22&toggle=1&cop=mss&ei=UTF-8&fr=yfp-t-701

You can see the two messages clearly in the links above, or you can click them to see the exact referral page (resulting from my specific searches).

So, go ahead, send me whatever secret message you want.

I do wonder what would happen if you had a long conversation with your secret lover or whomever using this method. Would it eventually stop working due to the search engines modifying the Referrer URLs to stop the silliness? Who knows.

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