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Author Topic: Spam users in the forum  (Read 9578 times)

btkaos

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Spam users in the forum
« on: February 14, 2011, 06:42:05 PM »

Well, looking to the members list it seems that recaptcha and amule question is broken, dozens of buggy users per day are registering and inserting their spam in a visible place (member page)

I don't know what should be done, but either using a harder captcha or question is one possibility. Others are to clean up the user list or to require approval.

Regards,
bTK
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Stu Redman

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Re: Spam users in the forum
« Reply #1 on: February 14, 2011, 10:47:58 PM »

I've nagged our forum admin about that too. I'd simply disable the display of any kind of link from the users page. And the "home page" feature (it could be enabled after 50 posts or so). No idea if that's easily feasible with our forum software though.
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Kry

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Re: Spam users in the forum
« Reply #2 on: February 15, 2011, 01:27:13 AM »

It is not. When smf 2.0 goes gold, things will change.
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btkaos

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Re: Spam users in the forum
« Reply #3 on: February 15, 2011, 01:31:50 PM »

How about using the dummy field trick or something like that?
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Kry

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Re: Spam users in the forum
« Reply #4 on: February 15, 2011, 05:10:30 PM »

*shrugs*

Elaborate?
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btkaos

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Re: Spam users in the forum
« Reply #5 on: February 15, 2011, 05:23:29 PM »

*shrugs*

Elaborate?
This consists in adding a hidden field to the form with the name "user" "email", etc... and changing the real field to something like "amule_mail". Then the post script checks that the email hidden field is empty, otherwise it bans the IP for a month.

Note, you have to hide the field using css and a class. Of course there's a lot of variations on this same trick.

Another option is to choose a more complicated question, the current one is really easy, usually classifying questions are quite good, that is to say:
"Which one is an animal: chair, pen, dog, computer, email,"
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Kry

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Re: Spam users in the forum
« Reply #6 on: February 15, 2011, 07:05:26 PM »

Oh yeah, the current question went through several iterations just to test if we were having automated spam or actual people spamming us. Turns out it's people.

I'll look into more devious things later in the week, if I have more time.
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btkaos

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Re: Spam users in the forum
« Reply #7 on: February 15, 2011, 09:56:20 PM »

Oh yeah, the current question went through several iterations just to test if we were having automated spam or actual people spamming us. Turns out it's people.
When I saw recaptcha broken I suspected that :(
Quote
I'll look into more devious things later in the week, if I have more time.
Well, the hidden trick field may or not stop them, depending on the skill of the spammer.
Other solution would be to require approval of users. This is however very inconvenient. :(

However if we disable the incentive for them I guess they won't overcome the hidden trick field.

So hiding the signature in the user page is the first step to take. Otherwise they will have enough incentive to overcome whatever countermeasure we use. They know they can't post because we will delete their messages, but amule.org is a high-pagerank target.

Then, once they have no incentive, I can make a list of spam users so you can mass delete them. As a first approach I'd delete all the users with 0 posts and a given seniority.

Other question, why the spam subforum? IMHO you should delete all the posts there, they contain links.
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btkaos

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Re: Spam users in the forum
« Reply #8 on: February 15, 2011, 10:00:48 PM »

Well stupid me, I see the spam subforum is only available to registered users. Sorry for that.

However member pages can be linked from outside and seen by anonymous users.
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Stu Redman

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Re: Spam users in the forum
« Reply #9 on: February 15, 2011, 10:49:02 PM »

I see the spam subforum is only available to registered users.
Wrong. It's only available to moderators.
The idea is that moderators can move the spam there out of everybody's sight so that administrators can ban the offenders later at leisure (plain mods like you and me can't ban people).
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btkaos

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Re: Spam users in the forum
« Reply #10 on: February 15, 2011, 11:11:47 PM »

I see the spam subforum is only available to registered users.
Wrong. It's only available to moderators.
The idea is that moderators can move the spam there out of everybody's sight so that administrators can ban the offenders later at leisure (plain mods like you and me can't ban people).
Thanks STU, I didn't know about the banning bit.

When an admin bans a spammer, is his account deleted?
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Kry

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Re: Spam users in the forum
« Reply #11 on: February 16, 2011, 04:53:47 AM »

It is if I'm the one applying the banhammer.
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Kry

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Re: Spam users in the forum
« Reply #12 on: February 16, 2011, 05:01:45 AM »

FYI: Guests couldn't see the member list. Now they can't see profiles, either.
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btkaos

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Re: Spam users in the forum
« Reply #13 on: February 16, 2011, 12:55:38 PM »

Oh that's a good step, AFAICT, now spammers have no incentive to spam the forum, anyways I'll watch them closely in order to see if they can profit some other way.
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Vollstrecker

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Re: Spam users in the forum
« Reply #14 on: February 16, 2011, 01:35:28 PM »

That's no step, that's how it goes for a long time now. They just don't care, as the members are enough possible viewers.
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