Online Reputation Management “Hat” strategies
Black Hat ORM
This would involve any hacking or similar attacks against the unwanted web site or automated spamming to the web using software or outsourced help. We have also seen ‘Hackers for Hire’ ‘BlackHatWorld Hackers’ and ‘Reputation Management Hacker” ads which are definitely unethical and illegal tactics that we would highly steer clear of.
White Hat Online Reputation Management
This is simply the practice of promoting positive material for a client. The goal is to create positive content that the client approves of that pushes the positive information about them online as high as possible in the search results above any unwanted content. The white hat campaign in time will push the positives up while sending the negatives down. There are many variables involved such as how popular was the negative, the popularity of the site it is on, the page rank etc..
Gray Hat Reputation Management
This is an area where you are not attacking a negative web site but you are also outside of the simple confines of positive site creation. The Reputation Management firm may be ‘spamming’ forums with positive information about the client or business and leaving ‘reviews’ and ‘comments’ in a popular light posing as customers of the business. There is software that can do a majority of the spamming such as Xrumer however that takes the firm from possibly spamming and light commenting to full blown Black Hat as seen below.