Spam Issues

Welcome Lower Merion residents!

We're glad you stopped by. Go ahead and register for a free account to get the benefits of being a member, including:
  • Access to all of our posts and comments
  • Your own profile including an avatar, buddy lists, and other social networking features
  • The ability to send private messages to other users on this site
  • The ability to chat and interact with other citizens and voters in and around Lower Merion.
Creating an account is easy. Register now!

(Don't live in Lower Merion? That's okay. We won't hold it aginst you.)
Tags:
dmuth's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 weeks 1 day ago
Joined: 2005-09-13 :35
Posts:

Due to absolutely stupid volumes of spam seen on this site lately, I've had to change some settings for user signups.

Effective as of yesterday, all new users must be approved by an admin (me).

This is sadly necessary--I've seen no less than 10 scumbag spammers try to sign up on this site in the last 24 hours.  It's unbelievable.

I really hate spam.

 

5
Average: 5 (6 votes)
Your rating: None

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
Hugh Gordon's picture
Offline
Last seen: 30 weeks 6 days ago
Joined: 2009-10-24 :58
Posts:

Sadly necessary is right.  It was threatening to wreck the place.

5
Average: 5 (3 votes)
Your rating: None
politeia's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 weeks 5 days ago
Joined: 2008-07-30 :00
Posts:

On the bright side, the SAC blogs must be getting a lot of page views and readers to warrant such spammer attention.

Être victime de son propre succès.

Bummer you have to waste time doing this manually, though. I know spam modules have been tried in the past and they seem to block regular users.

It amazes me the efforts these spammers make. They don't appear to be bots and that's a lot of effort for what I expect is just about zero return. 

=================

Brotherhood of Thieves ~ As we must account for every idle word, so must we account for every idle silence.

3.333335
Average: 3.3 (3 votes)
Your rating: None

 

 

bobguzzardi's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 3 weeks ago
Joined: 2006-01-13 :07
Posts:

Doug thanks for creating and maintaining  this web site.

5
Average: 5 (2 votes)
Your rating: None
john Haines's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 week 8 hours ago
Joined: 2009-07-15 :31
Posts:

Thanks Doug. I appreciate it that you are on top of it.

5
Average: 5 (3 votes)
Your rating: None
onmyown's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 40 weeks ago
Joined: 2011-01-01 :22
Posts:

I guess I'll have to go back to shopping at Harrison's.

4.5
Average: 4.5 (2 votes)
Your rating: None
dmuth's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 weeks 1 day ago
Joined: 2005-09-13 :35
Posts:

I haven't forgotten about this, BTW!

I'm looking at some new versions of the CAPTCHA modules which I hope to install later this week. Then I get to go through the backlog of users to validate.  There's over 100 in the queue.  Sadly, about 95% of them are very likely spammers. Sad

 

5
Average: 5 (2 votes)
Your rating: None
a7368261's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 day 14 hours ago
Joined: 2011-10-14 :57
Posts:

I recently read somewhere that just putting a CAPTCHA field on a webpage deters something like 85 to 90% of spammers. Actually enforcing it gets the remaining 10 to 15%. What do you have to lose, just put up some CAPTCHA fields without making them work, and see if it cuts down?

I don't usually read this kind of stuff but I was bored on a long flight

4
Average: 4 (1 vote)
Your rating: None
dmuth's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 weeks 1 day ago
Joined: 2005-09-13 :35
Posts:

CAPTCHAs by default are enforced.  That's how they work. Eye-wink

I already have a CAPTCHA field on the user signup page.  Visit http://www.saveardmorecoalition.org/user/register when not logged in and scroll to the bottom of the page if you'd like to see it.  In spite of that, spammers are still signing up. Yes, they're really going to the extra effort just to show up where they aren't wanted.  (Kinda like the Westboro Baptist Church, come to think of it.)

And here is a random cat:

4.5
Average: 4.5 (2 votes)
Your rating: None
dmuth's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 weeks 1 day ago
Joined: 2005-09-13 :35
Posts:

Okay, I have an update on this!  I upgraded the CAPTCHA module and was able to bring back the reCAPTCHA system.  Hopefully this will keep spammers away.  I also went and turned off the "accounts must be approved by admin" flag.

Just so folks know what I had to deal with, this is what my user admin screen looked like:

Of those (and another 50 or so accounts), I could tell just by looking at each user's page that about 80% of those people were spammers.  Horrifying.  Of the remaining 20%, I'd say about half of them at least looked legitimate, so I validated those accounts.

One amusing thing was that I almost passed over this account, because it looked like a spammer--at first.  But I did a double take when I saw the string "Lancaster Ave" in the address field, and realized that it was in fact a local business. Smiling

 

 

 

5
Average: 5 (2 votes)
Your rating: None

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.