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#21 2011-07-04 14:16:30

uli
Moderator
From: Cologne/Köln
Registered: 2006-08-15
Posts: 3,119

Re: Where does all that spam come from?

We had a new topic some hours ago in the development section of the forums, titled “How to open the New Tab”, with the following content:

Hi…

Am using asp.net.

How to open the new tab at the time of button click?

Can any one tell me the solution.

Thanks in advance.

This post and its author have been deleted from the forum. There was no immediate index for spam present in the post: no link neither in the post nor in the signature neither had the user put a link to a website in his personal forum data.

Well, I can’t tell whether asp.net makes using TXP impossible, and so can’t judge whether the post’s content was a proof for spam. (I personally thought he could have meant the new Home tab, see capitalized letters in “the New Tab”, or he could have asked for help writing a plugin.)

The fact that this post/user has been deleted alarms me in a region of my brain quite near to where my want for human rights is stored. And I have to confess I belong among those forum members who are using the reporting functionality quite often because more definite spammy posts do alarm other regions in my brain quite near to where my want for my own human rights is stored.

Don’t misunderstand me, I don’t want to complain about the admin who removed the user. He’s surely checked the facts, and better than I can as a normal forum member. I just want to demonstrate what a multitude of facts admins have to mind in order to shelter us from spammers, and what a tightropewalk that can be.

If we had a simple tiny script running in the forums, admins wouldn’t have to judge that many spam posts as they have to right now, and some TXP/internet newbies wouldn’t be alienated by seeing their posts or accounts deleted.
And: We’d be a step further towards the friendly forum we want to be.

If new members’ messages were tested against link code (HTML, BBcode, Textile, …) they’d have to post at least 10 times (until they’re normal members), which should alienate spammers sufficiently and offer enough instances to test normal users’ intentions. New members still had the possibility of posting plain text URLs so they could get help for online problems.
Plus: if new members weren’t granted access to profile.php?section=personality there’d be no problem with links in signatures. There’s already a similar function in place that doesn’t reveal email links to new members. That one could possibly be extended to remove the personality link in the user profiles section.


In bad weather I never leave home without wet_plugout, smd_where_used and adi_form_links

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#22 2011-07-04 14:45:54

colak
Admin
From: Cyprus
Registered: 2004-11-20
Posts: 4,988
Website

Re: Where does all that spam come from?

The fact that this post/user has been deleted alarms me in a region of my brain quite near to where my want for human rights is stored.

Hi Uli

For dubious cases I check their details on stopforumspam and botscout before banning/deleting.

Alternatively emails with buyviagra@domain.com, bestsexsites@domain.com, whatever… are also tell tell signs.

No one was deleted who was not cross checked to my knowledge.


Yiannis
——————————
neme.org | neme-imca.org | hblack.net | LABS

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#23 2011-07-04 14:49:59

Bloke
Developer
From: Leeds, UK
Registered: 2006-01-29
Posts: 5,979
Website

Re: Where does all that spam come from?

Thanks for the links colak, I didn’t know about those. Will check in future.

I felt the post in question was borderline (sp|h)am. And since I couldn’t make up my mind I simply ignored it and left it for someone else to deal with :-D

EDIT: and those API scripts on both sites might be worth investigating if we can find a forum administrator who has the necessary rights to implement them. A simple automatic check to one or both of those sites might be prudent. Anyone know if the APIs work at reducing actual spam posts? and / or accounts?

Last edited by Bloke (2011-07-04 15:01:40)


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#24 2011-07-04 15:04:59

ruud
Developer emeritus
From: a galaxy far far away
Registered: 2006-06-04
Posts: 4,544
Website

Re: Where does all that spam come from?

Guilty! I deleted (no ban) the post and the user.
Definitely spam: http://www.google.com/search?q=How+to+open+the+new+tab+at+the+time+of+button+click

botscout.com is limited to 300 queries per day (may not be enough).
stopforumspam.com is limited to 20000 queries per day.

Last edited by ruud (2011-07-04 15:38:31)

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#25 2011-07-04 15:41:32

colak
Admin
From: Cyprus
Registered: 2004-11-20
Posts: 4,988
Website

Re: Where does all that spam come from?

Bloke wrote

and those API scripts on both sites might be worth investigating if we can find a forum administrator who has the necessary rights to implement them.

the problem with the spam prevention on punBB is that it checks for exact matches of username+IP+email. This makes those lists irrelevant as IPs and usernames vary. There is a plugin for the latest Punbb which is using stopforumspam. I used it for the neme forum but – although spam was reduced, the change was very little. That’s why I moved on to this with very visible and satisfactory results. I was hoping that somebody could adapt it for this forum.

ruud wrote

botscout.com is limited to 300 queries per day (may not be enough).
stopforumspam.com is limited to 20000 queries per day.

If we do go this way stopforumspam has a much larger db but when the site is down, there should be an escape route for new registrations.


Yiannis
——————————
neme.org | neme-imca.org | hblack.net | LABS

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#26 2011-07-04 16:08:42

hcgtv
Member
From: Charlotte, NC
Registered: 2005-11-29
Posts: 2,154
Website

Re: Where does all that spam come from?

Here’s a good writeup by the folks at FluxBB about what measures to fight spam are available.


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#27 2011-07-04 19:26:53

uli
Moderator
From: Cologne/Köln
Registered: 2006-08-15
Posts: 3,119

Re: Where does all that spam come from?

ruud wrote:

Guilty! I deleted (no ban) the post and the user.

Ruud, you were absolutely right. (Self-quotation: Thanks for removing!)

I’d be happy if you admins could make some more spam security happen. Big thanks also to you for your time and efforts working on this one!


In bad weather I never leave home without wet_plugout, smd_where_used and adi_form_links

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#28 2011-07-04 19:36:33

Els
Admin
From: The Netherlands
Registered: 2004-06-06
Posts: 7,390
Website

Re: Where does all that spam come from?

uli wrote:

Big thanks also to you for your time and efforts working on this one!

And thank you, Uli, for being one of the forum’s most active spam reporters! ;)


<txp:Els /> ;)
Tag Reference | Unexpected behaviour? Check the tag trace | Still no clue? Check the names of your custom fields

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#29 2011-07-04 19:52:27

uli
Moderator
From: Cologne/Köln
Registered: 2006-08-15
Posts: 3,119

Re: Where does all that spam come from?

Els wrote:

And thank you, Uli, for being one of the forum’s most active spam reporters! ;)

:)

I’m too emotional: I hate these assholes! :))


In bad weather I never leave home without wet_plugout, smd_where_used and adi_form_links

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#30 2011-07-21 15:01:00

Destry
Moderator
From: Strasbourg, France
Registered: 2004-08-04
Posts: 2,365
Website

Re: Where does all that spam come from?

It’s getting to the point where the spammer usernames are pretty obvious, and there’s at least three of them logged on at any given time I am. WTF?!

It’s gone from damn annoying to f-ing hilarious.

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