spammers

Moderator: Mike Everman

El-Kablooey
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spammers

Post by El-Kablooey » Tue May 23, 2006 2:58 am

What's with all these jerks lately? Have they always been doing this? I've seen everything from porn to pills advertised on this site in the past 2 weeks, and now I see "newest registered user: onlinegambling".
On an endless quest in search of a better way.

El-Kablooey
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re: spammers

Post by El-Kablooey » Tue May 23, 2006 3:40 am

It seems like alot of wasted time for them. They must be really bored to search out forums, create accounts and post spam in the hope that they will get a couple of accidental hits.
On an endless quest in search of a better way.

tufty
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re: spammers

Post by tufty » Tue May 23, 2006 7:10 am

Is there a "captcha" type plugin for phpbb2? That might stop these fucking bots.

Simon

Anders Troberg
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re: spammers

Post by Anders Troberg » Wed May 24, 2006 8:55 am

Just be happy that you're running a fairly standard phpbb. I run a heavily modified UBB.threads together with a heavily modified Mambo and a somewhat modified PmWiki and a bunch of other more or less modified products on my site. Updating is not even an option...

Rossco
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re: spammers

Post by Rossco » Fri Nov 10, 2006 11:28 pm

Hey Mike, and all.

Just a note, that you maybe already know.
These latest spammers here, are heavily raiding the mailing lists.
Ive had many emails from places that i recognise from the trash topics and threads appering here.

I know that it is no easy task cleaning all these out, and damn near impossible to keep them out. Is there a way to keep the email lists and such away from them at least?
I changed my contact email here away from my main one as i was just getting too much crap through. Looks like a hell of a lot of it was coming through this site.

Ah, to think back on the good old inocent days hey!

Not winging as such, just amaized how this site has been pounced apon in the last year.

Rossco
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thecheat
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Post by thecheat » Mon Dec 25, 2006 8:50 pm

wow... I just came on the site and there's been a HUGE wave of spam! oddly it hasn't seemed to affect the newer threads.... or at least the active ones... but we've gotta do something about that.

can you change the requirements for being accepted to the forums?
Lasers, jets, and helicopters HURAH!

JetSet
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Post by JetSet » Mon Dec 25, 2006 9:31 pm

2 simple things that can be done easily in the control panel are to;

Set 'Enable account activation' to 'User' (so they need to check emails before being given access to post)

and

'User email via board' to 'Enable' to stop our email addresses being on public display.

Also, some kind of captcha mod to add a confirmation ( http://www.phpbb.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?t=473222 ) Captcha was slated last time the topic was brought up, but it cut out 100% of spam accounts when I installed it in a previous forum (albeit a diff. version).


Just a couple of suggestions.
Keep up the good work.
JS.

Mark
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Spam

Post by Mark » Tue Dec 26, 2006 3:59 pm

The spam is going exponential. Soon it will invade every topic ever posted. The only good thing I can see is that I find I am reviewing previous posts. ha
Mark
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thecheat
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Post by thecheat » Tue Dec 26, 2006 4:37 pm

I keep seeing the same topic name appear by multiple "users" perhaps it's time to pull out the ISP ban?

Also, though this may seem pointless, you could make it so you can't post anywhere unless you've got, say two posts (I know you should be able to change that) Then, make a subforum where you would post to gain those two posts. The spammers reply once, and never get further, real people reply the two times and go on their way.
Lasers, jets, and helicopters HURAH!

larry cottrill
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Spammers

Post by larry cottrill » Tue Dec 26, 2006 5:33 pm

My (bound to be unpopular) feeling is that you shouldn't be able to join the forums without:
(a) Interacting with a real person (moderator)
(b) Providing some indication that you're really interested in the forum topics
(c) Supplying your real name and physical address (could be just to the moderator signing you up, if desired)
(d) Providing a VALID email address (could be just known by the moderator, if desired)
(e) Promising to not promote or advertise junk that is of "general intrerest" not somehow related to the basic intent of the forums

It is already becoming time-consuming to comb through the garbage to find the real stuff you want to respond to. As long as a software robot can "join" forums pulled off the Web en masse[\i] and immediately begin to post to them, this is going to get worse, not better.

Incidentally, thousands of popular forums are going through this now. A really good clean solution would be well received by a lot of forum owners / moderators, even at a price.

Go to the 'Member List' link at the top, sort the list in 'Descending' order, and check out how many pages of 'members' there are with zero posts. Also, check out the URLs of the Websites they have listed (put your mouse pointer on them and the URL shows up in your browser, probably at the lower left corner). Some of these are probably just 'members' so their URL will show up and hoping someone will just click through to it. Utterly senseless.

L Cottrill

Mike Everman
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spammers

Post by Mike Everman » Wed Dec 27, 2006 8:14 am

Yeah, it is a pain deleting spam posts and topics. These fricking bastiches. I hope they move on when there is no action, but that I'm sure is a futile hope.

The forum is set to "user" confirmation, so it does seem as if these users are manually input. Only today have I had a user make multiple posts, and I deactivated the account. The next level there is for me to personally accept each sign up.

I've seen the setting for email through the board, but after searching, haven't seen the setting since the upgrade.

Hey Simon, drop me a line, my emails for you are not working...
Mike
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larry cottrill
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Re: spammers

Post by larry cottrill » Wed Dec 27, 2006 3:14 pm

Mike Everman wrote:The forum is set to "user" confirmation, so it does seem as if these users are manually input.
I don't think so ... I think the software they use is just that good. It's made especially to attack the most popular forum types. I'll bet all the perp has to do is put in the next 'user' name he wants to use, and it just keeps signing them up, then posting messages whenever he creates a new one to roll out. The forums are found by crawling the Web - the idiot 'marketer' doesn't care a whit what forums he hits or what the forum users are interested in, of course - just so he gets his "message" out to a zillion people while remaining essentially anonymous. Pretty cute stuff, eh?

L Cottrill

Jim Berquist
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xxx

Post by Jim Berquist » Wed Dec 27, 2006 4:29 pm

Mike:

Is there a way for The Real Users to help you find them ? Is there some way we could flag them as we come across them , allowing you to do a simple search. Many eyes are better then two!!!!!! If we could loose them as fast as they appear, maybe we could at least put a damper on there scamper........


Jim
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Bruno Ogorelec
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Re: spammers

Post by Bruno Ogorelec » Wed Dec 27, 2006 4:57 pm

Larry Cottrill wrote:
Mike Everman wrote:The forum is set to "user" confirmation, so it does seem as if these users are manually input.
I don't think so ... I think the software they use is just that good. It's made especially to attack the most popular forum types. I'll bet all the perp has to do is put in the next 'user' name he wants to use, and it just keeps signing them up, then posting messages whenever he creates a new one to roll out. The forums are found by crawling the Web - the idiot 'marketer' doesn't care a whit what forums he hits or what the forum users are interested in, of course - just so he gets his "message" out to a zillion people while remaining essentially anonymous. Pretty cute stuff, eh?

L Cottrill
Larry, you are right. This has been a hot topic among software developers of late. Namely, some of the leading names in the profession have recently -- for reasons best known to themselves -- released specialized software that preys on forums, registers spurious users automatically and posts spurious messages with links to commercial websites.

Other professionals have raised an outcry over what they consider abandonment of professional standards, but the damage has been done. This thing is spreading like wildfare and there are few forums that are not affected. All forums that I attend have been hit. And it is likely to get worse. The only hope, I guess, is that some of the opponents will come up with an antidote.

larry cottrill
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Spammer Detector

Post by larry cottrill » Wed Dec 27, 2006 5:31 pm

All right, you software gurus, here's what you need to do to save forums everywhere and make your first million (note that there are many formats for forum message boards, not just phpBB, so you would have to cover all the popular types):

A utility which runs constantly, checking the board member list for addition of new members. When a new member joins, the utility searches all the forums on this board for that member's first posts. It continues this search at regular intervals. When it finds at least one post, it alerts a moderator and displays the member info (name, email addr, web site url, etc.) PLUS a list of links to the post(s) discovered (or it could even display the first few lines of each post, in a table of all such posts). The moderator can then immediately check out the initial posts and decide right away whether to ban the member. When he hits the BAN key, all posts by that member are found and deleted, and the member ban is activated.

L Cottrill

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