Forum spammers

  • I can't see that this has been proposed before and it may be considered antisocial, undesirable or something like that.  Maybe its just not possible with the current forum software.

    Given the number of junk posts lately would it be feasible to require that a new member's first post be approved by one of the admins or mods (and maybe even hero members to spread the load) before it appears on the forum?  Maybe just the fact that they have to go through that hoop would deter the <expletive deleted="">spammers.

    I haven't looked back to see if anyone actually deletes these spam posts but, if they do, it must take nearly as much time as would approving the first posts of new members.

    At least some first posts are likely to be desperate cries for help but if there was a short delay in posting that might encourage people to spend the time searching the forum for an answer.


  • Rebel Alliance Developer Netgate

    We use "Stop Forum Spam" that does manage to block quite a few of the baddies, but they keep using e-mail/IPs that are not known to the central spammer database, so it makes it tough to track at first. I report every one that isn't already in the DB by the time I see it.

    Not sure what other restrictions are really feasible there. If we put a minimum post count on links, that just makes them post even more spam messages until they clear the limit. Having to approve everyone's first new post might be a bit too much of a burden on the mods/admins. (If SMF supports that… not sure if it does, haven't looked)

  • Does SMF support configurable "stop-words" ? (such lists typically the various 4-letter words like f*$k etc)

    If so, you might want to add some new e.g.  "Louis Vuitton", handbags etc

  • Rebel Alliance Developer Netgate

    It has censored words, but not AFAIK it can't stop the post, it only changes them… So we could have it change those to "I am a dirty spamming wanker" but not have it deny the post.

  • LAYER 8 Global Moderator

    "I am a dirty spamming wanker"

    And appropriate for the Louis VuittonI am a dirty spamming wanker posts ;)

  • Rebel Alliance Developer Netgate

    Censored that for you ;-)

  • Netgate Administrator

    Dredging up an old thread here but it seems appropriate.
    I notice that on other forums it's not possible to include web links in your posts until you have posted, say, 10 times. Is that something that might be possible here?
    In general the level of spam is pretty small here. In fact it's at a level that I still find it amusing how badly written most of it is. As someone who still uses Windows XP on a regular basis anything I can do to cut down drive-by infections is a bonus.  ;)


  • Im guessing that the drive by spammers don't realize that it only takes 3 clicks by an admin to completely wipe out all 25 posts they have just spammed a forum with.

    They probably don't care but  3 clicks spammer!

    Ok I feel better now.  ;)

  • Rebel Alliance Developer Netgate

    a couple more than that if we want to be sure they can't get back in, too. :-)

    putting a post restriction on links doesn't stop them, then they just make 10 junk posts and then put links in the rest.

    They're bots, they find ways in…

  • I have a set of forums up and get hammered daily with spammers.  I've beaten them all using SMF, two addons, and logic questions.

    I use httpBL and OS & Browser Detection as my two addons.  httpBL also leverages Project HoneyPot, which is real nice.  They're both stable and stop a majority of the spammers outright.

    I also use a logic question that cannot be solved by bots.  In SMF you can ask questions and receive answers during registration.  One question can be something like "Write the answer to the first question here again."  A bot cannot understand that, and you can always change that question to ask for the second or third answer.  I've also asked for answers to be spelled backwards and numbers to be spelled out.  It stops 99% of the bots out there.  I think in the past year I haven't gotten a single spammer registered with a constant 50 attacks per day.

    I'm running SMF 2.0.2 but I think the mods will work in your version.

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