Total Reading time: 5 minutes 

You have most likely heard many stories about LinkedIn showing warnings on many user accounts due to the use of browser extensions such as Linked Helper. We have been asked several times how Lead Connect is different and why using Lead Connect will not result in your LinkedIn account being restricted or banned. I will try to explain in details what LeadConnect is doing differently and why?

PS: Latest Linked Helper version seems to have addressed same issue now as per their latest update. I have not verified the code but hopefully they have.

After reading this article you will have more idea how Chrome extension and Cloud based software are different and what are the Pros and Cons of both. 

Before we can explain in details let’s understand how LinkedIn(or any website) can detect any chrome extension or any unintended activities first. 



How does Websites like LinkedIn can detect browser extensions? 🕵

When you visit any websites like Linkedin, they can not detect anything installed on your system directly. They have to use some indirect method and verify the installation.

There are 2 ways any website can detect installed Extension: 

  • Public Resources (Accessible to anyone without permission)
  • Behavioral Changes (Elements added as part of the website) 

LinkedIn uses these features to determine which extensions you have installed. As an example, if an extension has a public resource such as a logo or promo image, LinkedIn will try to retrieve the logo from the extension. As it is a publicly accessible resource it can fetch it and conclude that extension is present.

Now as most of the extensions are smart enough not to make their logos publicly accessible.

Other options for LinkedIn is to look for changes on their page, for instance LinkedIn will look for the addition of buttons or other features that are added by well known browser extensions. Most of the extension do add tons of such button which is very easy to detect. Also this part is against the TOS of LinkedIn and nothing else because one can store the data available to use in users’ account but can not give any extra UI elements which replaces LinkedIn’s premium features as it harms the revenue of LinkedIn.  

(Useful article: https://www.theverge.com/2017/8/15/16148250/microsoft-linkedin-third-party-data-access-judge-ruling)  



What does Lead Connect do differently? 😎

As LeadConnect is designed to work in the background, we don’t have to add any button related to automation part on LinkedIn. Many people have asked us to allow templates to be available on messages part on LinkedIn for easy access but we have not added that because of the same reason.

Obviously we don’t have any publicly accessible resources on our extension. Even the Logos shown on the popup on LinkedIn are created out of Text fields to avoid any kind of detection.



Cloud Vs Chrome Extensions: ☁ ⚡

I would like to take this further and talk about the Cloud based software, Now cloud based software are great (We are also working on one, Yeahhh) as they don’t have any chrome related issues. But they have an even bigger problem at hand. User IPs. 

Cloud based software use IP rotation to avoid getting detected by LinkedIn. Just imagine a small glitch in getting this IP and server actually exposes its real  IP, all the accounts connected to that server will be banned immediately by LinkedIn. This is very easy to detect as multiple connections will be made from the same IP. Servers uses Data center IPs which are always abused one way or another and have very spammy ratings. (Try to operate an account on any of the cloud servers like AWS without VPN, LinkedIn will ban your account instantly without any automation usage.)

While in case of Chrome extension, IPs are actual IPs of the user, (we call it Residential IPs) and it can never get into trouble. Also if you are using multiple accounts you can always use proxies to get new residential IP for each instance of your chrome.  

So when people say Cloud based software is safe to use and can never get into trouble, I will say so is chrome Extension (Dux-Soup is in market for more than 7 years now) but given that software has been developed keeping few critical things in mind. Else Cloud based software have even bigger risk 😉

If LinkedIn really want to remove all the automation, they can simply do by Adding CORS policy on their each request and even cloud versions will not be able to work. LinkedIn want to Stop spamming on their network but at the same time want to increase revenue. And automation software like ours helps in revenue part for sure as we recommend Sales Navigator subscription.

PS: Make sure you don’t use the tool to Spam on LinkedIn Network and your accounts will never get into trouble. There are Limits on LinkedIn account usage which you need to observe and follow.

Thanks for reading!

Hope you found this useful and I was able to clear some doubts. If you have any comments or questions, shoot me an email on [email protected]

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