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Data scraping on Facebook

On social networks such as Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, there is a huge amount of data. This data can be useful for developing your network on the Internet. To do this, many people opt for the simplest solution, which is web scraping. Is it possible to make web scraping on Facebook? How do you go about it? Find out here.

What is scraping?

Data scraping consists of subtracting data from an account or via a given network. It is a way of removing personal information such as e-mail addresses or telephone numbers from an account or web page. Data scraping does not necessarily require the use of a particular digital tool.

Data scraping is a very popular marketing technique, recommended by experts in the field. It is a way of increasing your audience or traffic. It allows you to quickly find customers on a social network like Facebook. As you can see, scraping offers a way of rapidly increasing your influence and reputation.

This is a method that targets a certain category of individuals, such as customers or potential employees. You can use it to attract these people to your web page. Web scraping enables users to carry out better marketing analyses.

Simply put, data scraping is the automated and massive extraction of data from a website or application. It is a practice used to duplicate competitors' product catalogues or to resell databases.

Is it possible to scrape data on Facebook?

Are you wondering whether it's possible to scrap the web on Facebook? The answer is quite simple. You can easily scrap data from Facebook. What's more, you don't need any special software. However, it would be a good idea to use a software specialised. This will save you time when prospecting for customers or employees.

What data can be extracted from the Facebook social network?

On social networks such as Facebook or Twitter, it is possible to extract certain personal information. Scraping is the best way to develop your network in a short space of time. It's a great way to find new customers, new investors and new colleagues.

If your aim is to copy and paste personal business information, this solution is perfect for you. It allows you to retrieve contacts from Facebook. You can extract email addresses or names of potential business partners.

On Facebook, you can scrape much more than just contacts. It's a very broad social network. So you can get auto-likes for a page or a group. This allows you to rapidly increase your influence and gain visibility and reputation.

Why scrap on Facebook?

In the first quarter of 2021, Facebook had more than 2.80 billion monthly active users. These users spend an average of more than 19 hours on the application each month. These are impressive figures that are attracting businesses that want to connect with their customers and fans.

Facebook pages are used by over 200 million small businesses. Their aim is to promote their service. On these pages, there are posts, comments and likes. There is also a lot of useful basic information about the businesses. This data can be used in a variety of ways.

You can do some scraping on Facebook to follow your competitors and identify what they're doing right or wrong. This way, you can do better and be more competitive. You can use the data for market research or analysis. In addition, it can help you monitor trends and sentiment about brands and companies. Data can be used to inform your investment strategy.

Scraping pages on Facebook is an excellent solution for identifying niches or creating completely new products. To do this, you need to put in place a set of data based on your sector, your region or even your town. This involves identifying synergies or ways of adding value.

Facebook scraping allows you to track changes in attitude to identify new opportunities. Through high or low levels of customer engagement, you can learn more about a market or industry.

How do I scrap on Facebook?

To scrap data on Facebook, it's important to use robots. For those in the know, all websites refuse to authorise data scraping via a bot. This is why you need to interact with the site by showing that you are a human being and not a robot in order to be able to scrape data. Otherwise, you will be blocked.

This rule also applies to Facebook. On the social network, you must necessarily lock this API in order to avoid legal restrictions. Without an API, Facebook does not give any authorisation. What's more, you can only access user interfaces and not personal data.

What scraping tools can I use on Facebook?

The scraping tools you can use on Facebook are application programming interfaces or APIs. These are software interfaces for consuming data using computer programs. So you can easily retrieve data on a large scale using automated processes or robots.

You can use tools like Octoparse. This is one of the best tools for scraping social networks. It has an intuitive interface. Octoparse offers point-and-click functionality, infinite scroll mode, text input option, login authentication, and much more. It's one of the best options for scraping on Facebook.

With Octoparse, you can access data in Excel, JSON or HTML format, or copy it and store it in a database. The tool also offers a Cloud Extraction service for a fee. Octoparse makes your job a lot easier and allows you to retrieve data quickly.

Like the Octoparse tool, io is also an excellent solution. It's a paid-for data extraction web application. It can create extraction bots, robots and much more. The tool offers useful services such as Captcha resolution, data storage in the cloud, text analysis, the MonkeyLearn service, and much more.

In addition to the Octoparse and io tools, you can opt for Scrapinghub. This is a web export platform available in the cloud that can handle bots. It offers an intelligent downloader with options for bypassing anti-bot programmes on social networks. This platform offers 4 applications: Scrapy Cloud, Portia, Splash and Crawlera.

Is scraping legal on Facebook?

It should be stressed that data scraping and its use may be illegal. On Facebook, it is illegal. It is even more illegal when you extract personal data without authorisation. By doing this, you are diverting traffic to your page without any authorisation and stealing personal data.

This type of action is penalised by Facebook. In addition, the owners of the accounts can take legal action against you. In France, extracting data without authorisation is illegal. Those responsible risk imprisonment and heavy fines. If it is considered plagiarism on Google, it is akin to theft on Facebook.

However, theft is not illegal when you use the data collected afterwards. You can get away with it if you add the data to your personal database or use it for cold calling or B2B purposes.

For those who know, it is possible to freely consult data published on the Internet. However, there are several cases in which scraping is considered an offence. This is the case when personal data is processed unlawfully. The collection of such data through scraping is often in breach of the General Data Protection Regulation. The civil, criminal and administrative penalties can be considerable.

When the collection of data via scraping involves an intrusion into an automatic system, this constitutes an offence. In addition, if a company that has been the victim of scraping is able to prove that the person who used this solution has undermined investments made with a view to compiling this data, it may be punished.

In the case of unfair competition, scraping on Facebook is considered illegal. When you copy data in such a way that Internet users confuse the company that has extracted it with the one that has collected it, there is an act of unfair competition.

In addition, when scraping has made it possible to extract all the data from a large database, there is database infringement. However, it is not easy to characterise this offence. Finally, copyright infringement is an offence. Copyright infringement occurs when scraping on Facebook makes it possible to copy a creation protected by copyright.

It is therefore important to take great care when setting up a scraping process as part of a commercial or marketing initiative.

Using the Apify scraper

If you want to retrieve targeted Facebook data such as comments and posts, you can use a scraper like APIFY. It has fewer parameters to configure. What's more, it delivers results more quickly. All you need to do is enter one or more publication URLs and click on scraper.

This Facebook Scraper acts as a Facebook API for exploring Facebook pages. The data you retrieve can be saved and used as you wish. The Apify scraper offers the ability to extract any content from a Facebook page, scrape comments and retrieve reviews.

It offers a filter option by minimum and maximum date. You can obtain all the information on the Facebook page, including the Twitter profile, Instagram profile, website, address, services and telephone number. You can also get all the other information, such as prizes and awards.

Using ScrapingBot

ScrapingBot is a tool for scraping on Facebook. You can use it to easily and effectively scrap Facebook profile and organisation pages. All you need to do is follow a few simple steps. First, you need to create an account. The tool guarantees free access with 100 credits per month to get you started. You don't need to enter any payment details and there's no commitment required.

Once you have an account, all you have to do is log in. From the home page, click on "FREE PLAN" or "Register" to create a free account.

Next, you need to configure scraping. Once you've created your account, you need to go to Documentation, under the "Data Scraper API" heading, to start scraping what you want.

Configuring the endpoint is a step-by-step process. It can take longer because social networks have many safeguards to prevent bots and scraping. Calls allow data to be retrieved without being blocked.

The first step is to obtain your Response ID. First you need to make a POST request to obtain the Response ID which will be used later. To do this, you need to enter the necessary parameters and then make an initial call.

The second step is to configure your second request. After obtaining the response Id, you can configure a GET request to request the response. You need to insert the response id you got with the POST API call

scraper. It must also be the same as the one used for the POST API call.

After that, you can execute the API call. The result will tell you whether the scraping is ready to be used or not. If it is not, you will receive a message. In this case, it would be wise to try again until it is ready.

The final stage is scraping. The web scraping configuration is ready to use. You can start by collecting data from your Facebook profile, organisation pages and publications.

A few tips for scraping the web on Facebook

When used properly, scraping offers many advantages. It allows the necessary data to be collected, analysed and reused. To make the most of this practice, it's important to know the dos and don'ts. You need to know the tricks of the trade to get the most out of web scraping.

Firstly, you must respect the site and its users. This is a fairly common piece of advice that may seem like nothing. You need to know which pages you can and cannot scrape. In some cases, you need information about how often you are allowed to scrap the site.

It is also necessary to respect other users who have access to the site. Intensive scraping of a website can involve the use of a large proportion of its bandwidth. This can prevent other users from having a good user experience. This is a very important rule. Failure to comply with these rules may result in your IP address being blocked.

Next, you need to detect when you are being blocked. Most websites don't like to be scraped. Some have developed anti-scraping solutions to block you. In general, you can tell immediately that you have been blocked by the error code you get.

However, there are more malicious ways of blocking you without your knowledge. There are websites that will still send you data that is fake. So you need to be careful to be alerted when things are unusual.

It is also important to avoid being blocked again. If a regular user visits a website, they will be able to access information about the user agent used. This includes the browser used, the version, the device used to visit the page, etc. Visitors without a user agent are automatically considered as robots. It is therefore advisable to write to a few different user agents and to make a regular alternative with them.

You should also take care to avoid using old or obsolete browser versions. This could be suspicious.

You also need to use the right proxies and tools. Anti-scraping systems first look at your IP address. When you are detected, they will place you on their blacklist of IP addresses. This prevents you from visiting the site and scraping. The use of a proxy is a good solution. By using it, your request will appear as if it came from an IP address other than your own. A standard proxy offers data centre IP addresses. These are easier to detect and block.

It is advisable to use premium proxies such as Bright Data, which is one of the best known. You can take advantage of residential proxies to bypass all geographical restrictions. You can also easily scrap more complicated sites such as Facebook, AmazonGoogle, etc.

In short, scraping is a solution that offers many advantages. It is possible to scrap data from Facebook. However, it is considered illegal in some cases. That's why you need to follow the right steps. You also need to follow the right advice to succeed in the scraping process. You need to use the right tools and proxies. This allows you to bypass sites that are complicated to scrap.

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