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Holy spambots Batman!


Pussycat Catnap
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Easy to stop.

Spam is stupid advertisement, made for stupid clickers and to be successful you need alot - many millions. So the only way to handle it is speed and automated systems.

Make signup difficult (authentication link by email and maybe captcha) and time consuming (1 post per 24hrs for new accounts) Forum will be uninteresting for spammers then and the rates will drop alot.

 

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Like the spammer this morning.
Created about 10 accounts and started spamming.
Luckily the mods removed the junk relatively quickly.
If there had been a delay function, the spammer would have stopped quite quickly.

One idea:

1 new topic per 24h and 5 thread answers until a minimum of 30 posts is reached.
Why not sign-up date dependent? Because spammers often sign up and let account age to circumvent
such regulations. By making it dependent on the number of posts, that trick fails.
If you have a technical problem, you don't need the ability to flood the forum with hundreds of posts.

 

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At my last job we stopped forum spam in three simple steps:

  1. Captcha to register. This can cut fake accounts down from about 1000-5000 per day to as little as 3-10. The software to bust captchas is I guess, too expensive or something for most spam houses. But this is only going to be true for another year or two. Captchas are quickly becomming human impossible but computer easy.
  2. Moderate first X number of posts. We chose 1. Just making them have at least 1 legit post prevented 100% of all spam attempts from ever being seen by our users. But out moderators still had to wipe a few hundred per day.
  3. Basic SEO and meta-data changes. We simple made our forum more attractive to people looking for the subject matter, but not attractive or visible as a forum. People who -knew- the subject matter realized it was a forum. But if you did not, it did not come up as a forum in search. This cut spam registrations down to about 1 per -week-.

It really would not take LLs much work to wipe out all of this spam. And doing so would -ALSO- wipe out all the massive thousands of fake accounts created for SL everyday - fake accounts that are rapidly draining the list of available names.

 

 

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