In a filing made public today, Zillow accused Realtor.com operator Move, Inc. of scraping the listing data from its website in a new court filing today, as part of an ongoing feud between the two companies. David Beitel, Zillow’s chief technology officer, said in the declaration that Zillow’s tech team detected requests for information from its website earlier this month that matched an automated scraping program.
“The Zillow.com content that was accessed included search results covering every State, as well as Puerto Rico and Guam,” Beitel said. “Indeed, the intrusiveness of the application was such that it was averaging approximately 36,000 data requests to the Zillow.com website each day.”
Those requests were traced back to an IP address that – according to Zillow – belongs to Top Producer Systems, a division of Move that’s based in British Columbia. Zillow blocked further access from that address, but Beitel said that it would be a “relatively simple matter for a party interested in connecting to the site to do so through a different IP address.”
That accusation comes in response to a claim that Zillow scraped data from Move to benchmark its own listings levied in a letter written by former Zillow executive Chris Crocker and submitted to the court by Move. In a declaration filed with the court, Crocker, who sent the letter anonymously to Move, said in a declaration today that he didn’t want to be identified because he feared retaliation by Zillow.
In his declaration, he doubled down on his claims, saying that what he wrote was “based on personal observation and experiences” and doesn’t contain any trade secrets, despite Zillow’s claims to the contrary.
Crocker’s letter also included other accusations about conduct on the part of Zillow Chief Industry Development Officer Errol Samuelson and Vice President of Industry Development Curt Beardsley, who are named defendants in this case. Both men have filed declarations denying the claims against them, which include accusations that Beardsley stole databases from Move in order to benefit Zillow.
Aside from its filings, Zillow is remaining fairly mum on the case.
“We have taken appropriate legal action to address this situation based on the facts,” Zillow spokesperson Katie Curnutte said in a statement emailed to GeekWire.
A representative for Move declined to comment on this report. The declarations from Beitel and Crocker are embedded below.