Retraction Watch Introduces “Hacked Log Checker”

From a blog post about the retraction watch:

Hacked journals imitate legitimate journals by adopting their titles, ISSN and other metadata. Usually pirated journals mirror legitimate journals without the permission of the original journal. In rare cases, publishers will buy the rights to a legitimate journal but continue publishing under considerably less stringent publishing protocols and without clearly notifying the reader of the change in ownership or publishing standards (sometimes referred to as “cloned” journals) .

Academics may find themselves publishing in hijacked journals – many of which are fee-based – offering rapid publication and indexing in databases such as Scopus; being indexed in such databases is considered by many universities and governments as a mark of legitimacy. Even the WHO’s COVID literature database has been duped.

Tracking these journals is no small feat, but knowing which journals may have been hacked is vital to the world of editorial integrity. Anna Abalkina became involved in the process when she and her colleagues, investigating allegations of plagiarism, came across several titles, including the Journal of Talent Development and Excellencewhich significantly increased its indexing of articles in Scopus in 2020, and Waffen-und Kostümkunde, a journal that quoted an article on psychology absolutely unrelated to the journal’s weapon and costume specialization. Abalkina then began to analyze these journal archives and found overlaps with other apparently pirated journals, devoting huge swathes of time to locating and verifying the validity of journals suspected of being pirated or being pirated.

In partnership with Retraction Watch, Abalkina created the Retraction Watch Hijacked Journal Checker.

Learn more, read the full blog post

Direct to Retraction Watch Hijacked Journal Checker

Filed Under: Archives & Special Collections, Companies (Publishers/Vendors), Journal Articles, News, Publishing

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant and frequent speaker based in the Washington DC metro area. Prior to starting INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and editors of ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006 to 2009, he was director of online news services at and is currently an editor at Search Engine Land.

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