UnwiredLab and The Fun

Never thought crawling data from a company will be found out so fast.


The thing is UnwiredLab has extensive dataset that allows them to derive the cell tower location. And they sell the number of queries for the service. Similar services include Google Map, OpencellID, Combain, CellIDFinder, etc. UnwiredLab provides a trial/free account that allows 50 queries per day, 1500 per month. Because of my research purpose, I need extensive number of queries. I wrote my crawler and wanted to test its robustness, but obviously 50 isn't enough for testing. So I created 6 accounts in a row, with Tor, trying to escape from their spam detection system. 

Well, they found it out. And the following is our conversation via email.

We noticed a lot of requests/signups coming from your side. Could you tell me about your use-case, we'll try to help you out.

No worries. I'm trying to test my crawler to see if a large number of requests can be done without errors. But your system only supports 50 per day, and I don't want to waste my money on crawler errors. Will pay ya soon once my code is confirmed working correctly. Sorry about the large number of sign ups. 😛 haha

No problem, I'm glad you were able to test it out successfully! Are you using this as part of any research? I've added 300 bonus credits to your token xxx. You can consider the startup plan which gives 6000 credits for $49.

Thanks. Yes, that's right. And if possible, do you think you can give me a hint about your algorithm to find the location of cell tower, for example, centroid? I didn't find related info on your webpage.

We do have a very capable service with an extensive dataset and proprietary algorithms (centroid is a part of it).


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