ahmet Published: August 29, 2023 · 5 minutes read

Today, the Internet has become one of the most important sources for both businesses and users to access information. However, accessing and processing this data has not always been easy. Obtaining data from web pages has recently become more and more easy. A web scraping tool has replaced manual obtaining data from the Internet.

Collecting and extracting data on a web page with the web scraping tool has become important for researchers, developers, and data analysts who want to gather information. The legality of data scraping has been a matter of debate for a long time, and users have faced many legal challenges in this regard. In this article, we will first talk about illegal web scraping and what to watch out for during scraping. Then, we will discuss the harms of illegal web scraping and explain how to do legal web scraping with today’s best web scraping tool.

What Is Illegal Web Scraping and What Should Be Considered During Web Scraping?

Web scraping is a very popular process that allows its users to collect data on the Internet in an automated way. However, it can bring some legal and ethical challenges. Illegal scraping is the process of extracting data without the data subjects’ consent or violating the law. To avoid legal and ethical issues, it is extremely important to pay attention to the following issues while scraping the web:

  • Terms of Use and Robots.txt Files Review: You should carefully review the terms of use and robots.txt file of the website you are targeting—these documents state which data and pages the website allows or prohibits access to.
  • Knowing Legal Limitations: Each country may have different web scraping laws and data protection regulations nowadays. Understanding these legal limitations and requirements is important to avoid getting involved in illegal scraping.
  • Respect for Personal Data: When collecting personal data, you must respect privacy and data protection laws. Taking personal data without permission or using it maliciously is illegal and unethical.
  • Copyright and Intellectual Property: Taking copyrighted content without permission or infringing copyright is illegal. It is important to respect intellectual property rights.
  • Data Amount and Speed: You should control the web data extraction speed and frequency to avoid overloading the website in your scraping code. Excessively fast and intense scraping can adversely affect the performance of the website.
  • Target Website Blocking Policies: Some websites may block your IP address when they detect excessive traffic or want to block data scraping applications. Therefore, you should consider the blocking policies of the target website.
  • Commercial Use Permissions: If you use data scraping for commercial purposes, you should check the terms of use offered by the target website to see if commercial use is permitted.

Discover the comprehensive guide to web scraping.

What Are the Harms of Illegal Web Scraping?

The illegal data collection process is basically the process of extracting data from websites without the data owners’ consent or violating the law. Performing illegal web crawling with scraping tools can have serious legal, ethical, and business implications. Here are some of the harms of illegal web scraping:

  • Legal Issues: Illegal scraping can lead to legal issues such as copyright infringement, violation of data protection laws, and unfair competition. Data owners can sue for the extraction of data that was not legally collected.
  • Reputational Damage: Illegal data scraping can seriously damage a company or individual’s reputation. Data subjects may not take kindly to this behavior due to unauthorized data extraction, and a negative public image may be created.
  • Service Interruption: Excessively fast and intensive scraping can affect the performance of the target website. It may lead to website slowdown or service interruption, resulting in the target website providing a negative user experience.

How Does Zenscrape API Help Legal Web Scraping?

home page of the zenscrape web scraping api

Zenscrape API is one of the most popular services preferred for web data scraping today. It is a unique web scraping API that integrates easily with all programming languages and provides all the HTML code on the target website.

This API is a service that businesses and developers can use for many purposes, such as legal data mining. Zenscrape API provides a number of features to support legal and ethical scraping processes. It facilitates legal data scraping practice, especially with important details such as proxy usage. Proxy usage is important in matters such as privacy and data security. Thanks to the proxy support of the Zenscrape API, data extractions can be performed more securely and ethically. Proxies hide your IP address and can make it difficult for website owners to detect or block excessive traffic. This both protects the privacy of the data extractor and does not affect the performance of the target website.

Learn proxy scrape introduction to proxies in web scraping!

Apart from the proxy service provided by the Zenscrape API, it is still very important for users to examine the terms of use of the target websites and their Robots.txt files and investigate the legal processes.


To sum up, it is extremely important that the web scraping practice, which is made to access general data on the Internet, is carried out in accordance with the law. However, even within the framework of this legality, it is very important to respect personal data, copyrights, and terms of use and to maintain an ethical and responsible approach.

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Q: Does Zenscrape API help users extract data legally?

A: Yes, it does. Zenscrape API provides services and features such as Proxy to help users legally pull data from the web.

Q: What are the common web scrapers?

A: The most popular web scraping APIs in the market today are as follows:

  • Zenscrape API
  • Zenserp API
  • The scrapestack API
  • Scrapingdog API
  • ScrapingBee API

Q: Is Zenscrape a web scraper API using a proxy pool?

A: Yes, it is. Zenscrape API has a proxy pool with millions of IP addresses. This way, it offers a unique service, such as location-based scraping.

Q: How do you scrape data on the Internet legally?

A: To legally scrape data over the Internet, you must respect the terms of use of websites, comply with applicable laws and regulations, avoid collecting sensitive or personal information without appropriate permission, and be careful that your scraping activities do not disrupt targeted websites or violate their policies.

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