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Author Topic: attack of uggs  (Read 3631 times)
eleman
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« on: December 06, 2011, 11:59:44 AM »

About the recent spammer activity... I was thinking... A good idea would be to make new members wait for 12 hours or so before allowing them to post new topics. Replies would be allowed though. Just an idea. Don't know how that can be done.

edited for grammar.
« Last Edit: December 06, 2011, 12:08:11 PM by eleman » Logged
jgpaiva
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« Reply #1 on: December 06, 2011, 12:05:02 PM »

Usually we don't have enough spam to compensate the number of hassle that would create, I think.
Many members join to create a new thread about a bug, coding snack request or just to introduce themselves (or thank for a program).
Also, many of the bots actually register like 1month before making the first post, so I guess it wouldn't be much help.

However, I did notice that today there seems to be more spam than usual making it past the registration process. I have no idea why this is happening, though.
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Renegade
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« Reply #2 on: December 06, 2011, 12:05:18 PM »

Yeah... it's getting bad. Blacklist "ugg" maybe?

Waiting might help... Not sure if it's viable though.
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mouser
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« Reply #3 on: December 06, 2011, 12:09:36 PM »

Quote
However, I did notice that today there seems to be more spam than usual making it past the registration process. I have no idea why this is happening, though.

yeah.. the amount of spam in the last week that we have to delete has gone through the roof.  it boggles my mind how this can be profitable for these spammers but it seems like they are impervious to logic or reality.

we may have to take extra steps to automate the blocking of these accounts.  i doubt the accounts are being created automatically (though they are most certainly being posted to automatically).  it sounds like we need to put in place an extra step or two to stop these spammers.
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jgpaiva
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« Reply #4 on: December 06, 2011, 12:13:57 PM »

Actually, after looking at the logs, today looks similar to other days. December 03 and 02, for example, had 6 and 7 spammers respectively,  whereas today there were 8. So it may just be my perception that is fooling me tongue

Renegade: Maybe not blacklisting "ugg" (banning a user automatically for using a word sounds dangerous), but maybe we could subject posts containing "suspicious words/expressions" to moderator approval?
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40hz
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« Reply #5 on: December 06, 2011, 12:30:18 PM »

My experience has been it has to be caught (as much as possible) at the point of registration. Otherwise it never ends. Blacklisting words is seldom effective for more than a month or two. The spammers just start spamming different products once they get bounced out.

Requiring a verifiable email confirmation and a "secret question" during registration helped with a site I used to work with. They used to get carpet-bombed with garbage on a daily basis. You needed to respond to the email to confirm your registration. The email had directions, but not a clickable link to the confirmation page since automated registration bots are on to this step. You had to login once and answer the secret question to confirm your registration. After that, the first time you went to post, you were asked for your answer to your secret question one last time.

This got 99.9% of the potential spammers. But not all. A few still got through from time to time. No rest for the wicked, that's for sure.

It possibly also turned off a (very) few genuine would-be registrants. But our take was that if anybody was that touchy about the site attempting to keep spam out of everybody's face, then maybe ours wasn't the site for them to begin with.

It's a tough call. Because the last people you want to unintentionally turn away are the people that have little patience with registration nonsense. Very often, they're the most interesting contributors to the dialog once they get on board.
 Cool
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mouser
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« Reply #6 on: December 06, 2011, 12:30:43 PM »

working on some prevention code right now.
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Ath
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« Reply #7 on: December 06, 2011, 01:48:03 PM »

And blocking new topics for a couple of hours isn't helping much, as at least half of the spam posts is a reply to a, often old, thread.
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mouser
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« Reply #8 on: December 06, 2011, 01:54:57 PM »

well i put in place a trivial little extra protection for first time posters.. let's see if the spider catches any flies and what flies go around the web, and what fellow spiders get sticky feet, before i put in place something stronger..
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mouser
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« Reply #9 on: December 06, 2011, 02:13:17 PM »

I wish there were some vigilante groups that would go after spammers and companies that hire spammers.

By now they should have destroyed every company on the web selling their products using spammers, and made the use of spammers something no company would dare do for fear of the repercussions from such vigilantes.
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f0dder
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« Reply #10 on: December 06, 2011, 02:16:25 PM »

What about...

1) putting people on a watchlist if their first post is made "fairly long" after registering.
2) watchlist if a "very few posts" member replies to a necro-thread.
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40hz
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« Reply #11 on: December 06, 2011, 02:38:25 PM »

I wish there were some vigilante groups that would go after spammers and companies that hire spammers.

By now they should have destroyed every company on the web selling their products using spammers, and made the use of spammers something no company would dare do for fear of the repercussions from such vigilantes.

It is rather 'amusing' that China and Russia - two countries who's governments seem to be so effective at restricting legitimate internet usage which runs counter to their political agendas - find themselves so powerless to deal with known spam syndicates operating within their borders.

Guess, in large part, spamming continues to be a problem because it's yet another manifestation of "spoiler" behaviors directed at Western society by nations quick to take offense at criticism, but slow to take on the initiatives or responsibilities needed to be full citizens in a modern data-linked world.

And Putin seriously wonders why membership in the EU and NATO remains so elusive? undecided

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jgpaiva
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« Reply #12 on: December 06, 2011, 05:38:32 PM »

1) putting people on a watchlist if their first post is made "fairly long" after registering.
2) watchlist if a "very few posts" member replies to a necro-thread.
Actually, that exists already. We get emails for suspicious posts. But it implies that posts live until someone checks the email. That's why I mentioned suspicious posts could be subjected to moderator approval.
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mouser
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« Reply #13 on: December 06, 2011, 05:39:41 PM »

Quote
That's why I mentioned suspicious posts could be subjected to moderator approval.

that really is the best solution, and would prevent all spam.  it's just not trivial to backport into smf1.x (i think it's easier in smf2).
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Josh
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« Reply #14 on: December 06, 2011, 05:40:31 PM »

Upgrade to smf2? ;-)
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jgpaiva
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« Reply #15 on: December 06, 2011, 05:42:15 PM »

Upgrade to smf2? ;-)
I wouldn't say this is a matter important enough (most spam gets deleted quickly anyway) for mouser to lose a month of his life upgrading and porting stuff tongue
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mouser
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« Reply #16 on: December 06, 2011, 05:47:33 PM »

If we need to, I will add the ability to require first posts to be approved.. It wouldn't be *that* hard to add. Let's see how the latest changes go first.
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Josh
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« Reply #17 on: December 06, 2011, 05:50:58 PM »

Upgrade to smf2? ;-)
I wouldn't say this is a matter important enough (most spam gets deleted quickly anyway) for mouser to lose a month of his life upgrading and porting stuff tongue

I know. Mouser does a great job running the site we have and I am glad to see he knows the inner workings of this code so well. No sense wasting time on a minor fix smiley
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rgdot
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« Reply #18 on: December 06, 2011, 06:28:02 PM »

In my experience only way that comes close to effectiveness is rotating questions that need answering for the registration to be successful.

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