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Massive spam attacks on the forum lately!

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Massive spam attacks on the forum lately!

Postby zboy1 » September 18th, 2013, 10:42 am

Winston, the Indian spammers are at it again! You said that you recently removed the block of IPs coming from India; well, that is causing this forum to be inundated with Indian spammers and false posts.

Why are there so many spammers from India, and why do they like coming on this forum so much!?

Maybe you could institute some kind of captcha system, so that spammers can't just freely post their garbage here on this forum?
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Postby Winston » September 18th, 2013, 8:17 pm

We do have a captcha system. But human spammers can get past it easily.

How many are coming now? I only saw a few.
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Postby zboy1 » September 19th, 2013, 4:39 am

Winston wrote:We do have a captcha system. But human spammers can get past it easily.

How many are coming now? I only saw a few.


Multiple people daily. You only see a few because I've deleted most of them before you log on...
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Postby Winston » September 19th, 2013, 8:53 pm

Should we block the Indian spammers again? If so, we end up blocking some in the US too for some reason.
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Postby Winston » November 25th, 2013, 10:54 pm

Well I've stopped the recent spam attacks by disabling user activation. But the problem is that any new genuine users will also not be able to activate their account. Also, everyday HUNDREDS of spam accounts are being created on this forum, even though they are not being activated. So I have to prune the memberlist by deleting new members with zero posts everyday. It's crazy.

What can we do? At this point, newly registered users will not be able to post. But if I re-enable user activation, then hundreds of spam posters will be posting.

What's the solution? There is no option in the admin panel to put new users on moderated status, not in this phpbb version.

I'll either have to try changing the humanizer question, or block all the spammers from India again by putting all the IP's from that country into the htaccess file.

Any suggestions?
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Postby Johnny1975 » November 25th, 2013, 11:01 pm

Don't allow new members to post for a week
Make it so that the first x number of posts have to be approved
Give new members a limit on how many posts they can write per day
Make all new threads subject to approval, up to a point

Basically just slow them down and make it unappealing for them to spam.
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Postby HouseMD » November 26th, 2013, 12:16 am

You could force captchas for posts.

And do you have both a captcha and a humanizer question? You could add multiple humanizer questions, have them be random.

For now I would just ban the India IPs though- some new members are better than no new members.

I just don't get spammers. Does anyone ever actually use their links? It's insane that it is profitable enough for them to ruin entire sections of the Internet on a regular basis.
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Postby Winston » November 26th, 2013, 12:56 am

I already said that we have captcha's and humanizer questions. The problem is we can't put new users on moderated status. I'd have to try to install a mod for that.

For now, I'll have to try to change the humanizer question and ban the India IP's again. Otherwise, we will be bombarded by hundreds of spam accounts registering everyday, which I have to prune out everyday.
Check out the latest posts in our blog The Happier Abroaders.

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Postby HouseMD » November 26th, 2013, 12:59 am

Winston wrote:I already said that we have captcha's and humanizer questions. The problem is we can't put new users on moderated status. I'd have to try to install a mod for that.

For now, I'll have to try to change the humanizer question and ban the India IP's again. Otherwise, we will be bombarded by hundreds of spam accounts registering everyday, which I have to prune out everyday.

Can you implement captchas for posts though? Like to fill out in order for the submit button to process? 4chan uses that system and it works very well at keeping spam at bay.
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Postby Winston » November 26th, 2013, 9:48 am

No I can't. There is no feature like that here. But even if there were, that's not a good idea, unless it only applies to new posters, or else regular forum posters would be annoyed at having to type captchas on every post. Besides, spam bots can figure out captchas easily now.
Check out the latest posts in our blog The Happier Abroaders.

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Postby Cornfed » November 26th, 2013, 9:58 am

One strategy used on another forum is to require new members to e-mail the administrator and say why they want to be a member.
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Postby Winston » November 26th, 2013, 10:34 am

Cornfed wrote:One strategy used on another forum is to require new members to e-mail the administrator and say why they want to be a member.


That would add a lot of extra work load for me. I don't check my email everyday. Besides, anyone can give a reason to join a forum. Talk is cheap.
Check out the latest posts in our blog The Happier Abroaders.

Don't forget my HA Grand Ebook and Dating Sites!

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Postby Winston » November 26th, 2013, 10:42 am

Ok I changed the humanizer question from "What is the capitol of Texas?" to "Which country did Hitler invade first at the onset of WWII?"

We'll see if that stops the spam registrations. If not, I'll have to ban India in the htaccess file again.
Check out the latest posts in our blog The Happier Abroaders.

Don't forget my HA Grand Ebook and Dating Sites!

"It takes far less effort to find and move to the society that has what you want than it does to try to reconstruct an existing society to match your standards." - Harry Browne, How I Found Freedom in an Unfree World
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Postby Cornfed » November 26th, 2013, 10:47 am

Winston wrote:
Cornfed wrote:One strategy used on another forum is to require new members to e-mail the administrator and say why they want to be a member.


That would add a lot of extra work load for me. I don't check my email everyday. Besides, anyone can give a reason to join a forum. Talk is cheap.

The thing is that they would have to write an individualized e-mail response for every account. This takes a lot of time. Obviously you would learn to recognize generic responses. This would make most spamming non-viable from a time perspective. You could deflect some of to the e-mails to mods. But if you are to continue to make your living from the Internet, it might actually be necessary to check your e-mail on more than a daily basis.
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Postby OutWest » November 26th, 2013, 4:13 pm

Winston wrote:We do have a captcha system. But human spammers can get past it easily.

How many are coming now? I only saw a few.



Don't be fooled Winston. The horde of spammers are from the strippers union....
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