Spam Spam and More Spame

Floren

Well-known member
Personally, I completely solved the spam issues on my site by blocking the following countries to register, start a thread, conversation, profile message or post reply to thread:
$geoip_country_code = A1, AF, BD, BR, CN, ID, IN, PK
If someone from the above countries tried to post something, he/she will get redirected to the forum rules page. There you can customize a message to let them contact you if they are well intended and not spammers. So far, I never got an email. :)

I was getting every single day at least 10-15 spam posts and at least 20 weird new users.
 

gordy

Well-known member
Personally, I completely solved the spam issues on my site by blocking the following countries to register, start a thread, conversation, profile message or post reply to thread:
$geoip_country_code = A1, AF, BD, BR, CN, ID, IN, PK
If someone from the above countries tried to post something, he/she will get redirected to the forum rules page. There you can customize a message to let them contact you if they are well intended and not spammers. So far, I never got an email. :)

I was getting every single day at least 10-15 spam posts and at least 20 weird new users.
Can you explain where the country code bit goes ?
 

HoddzDJ

Active member
My spam settings in the AdminCP are set to the following...
Maximum Message Count - 30
Maximum Days Since Registration - 28
Maximum Likes Received - 5

$geoip_country_code = A1, AF, BD, BR, CN, ID, IN, PK
Thanks for the tip, Floren, but where would I put this code?
 

HoddzDJ

Active member
Just a quick update, one of my spammers has posted 3,000+ messages on my board so I have ignored the post count. Since I have done that a few of the spammers have had the Spam link in the thread, so I will now get to work on removing them and then fixing up my board to hopefully prevent spammers. Once Floren tells more about that code I will also get that added and all being well it will sort the spammers once and for all!

Thanks for your help everyone, we all hate spammers eh?!
 

HoddzDJ

Active member
Sorry to keep updating the thread, but I am getting a few errors when I'm trying to clean up the spam. First the server will time out which is understandable as most of the spammers have posted 2,000+ posts so it will take time to remove them all. When I try to clean them again, I get a mysql error which I have posted below. Any help would be great, but I will keep trying and see if I can get rid of them in the meantime.

The following error occurred:

Mysqli statement execute error : Duplicate entry '530' for key 'PRIMARY'
  1. Zend_Db_Statement_Mysqli->_execute() in Zend/Db/Statement.php at line 297
  2. Zend_Db_Statement->execute() in Zend/Db/Adapter/Abstract.php at line 479
  3. Zend_Db_Adapter_Abstract->query() in Zend/Db/Adapter/Abstract.php at line 574
  4. Zend_Db_Adapter_Abstract->insert() in XenForo/DataWriter.php at line 1591
  5. XenForo_DataWriter->_insert() in XenForo/DataWriter.php at line 1580
  6. XenForo_DataWriter->_save() in XenForo/DataWriter.php at line 1381
  7. XenForo_DataWriter->save() in XenForo/Model/User.php at line 2121
  8. XenForo_Model_User->ban() in XenForo/Model/SpamCleaner.php at line 130
  9. XenForo_Model_SpamCleaner->_banUser() in XenForo/Model/SpamCleaner.php at line 25
  10. XenForo_Model_SpamCleaner->cleanUp() in XenForo/ControllerPublic/SpamCleaner.php at line 50
  11. XenForo_ControllerPublic_SpamCleaner->actionIndex() in XenForo/FrontController.php at line 310
  12. XenForo_FrontController->dispatch() in XenForo/FrontController.php at line 132
  13. XenForo_FrontController->run() in /home/pukkarad/public_html/community/index.php at line 13
 

Jake Bunce

XenForo moderator
Staff member
Sorry to keep updating the thread, but I am getting a few errors when I'm trying to clean up the spam. First the server will time out which is understandable as most of the spammers have posted 2,000+ posts so it will take time to remove them all. When I try to clean them again, I get a mysql error which I have posted below. Any help would be great, but I will keep trying and see if I can get rid of them in the meantime.
That error means you are banning the user (via spam cleaner) but the user has already been banned. You should be able to fix this by unbanning him before cleaning him again:

Admin CP -> Users -> Banned Users

To help address extreme spam situations like yours (where the spam cleaner might not work) I have posted several manual cleanup options in this resource:

http://xenforo.com/community/resources/dealing-with-forum-spam.980/
 

HoddzDJ

Active member
That error means you are banning the user (via spam cleaner) but the user has already been banned. You should be able to fix this by unbanning him before cleaning him again:

Admin CP -> Users -> Banned Users

To help address extreme spam situations like yours (where the spam cleaner might not work) I have posted several manual cleanup options in this resource:

http://xenforo.com/community/resources/dealing-with-forum-spam.980/
Thanks for the help Jake, read through your guide and it has helped loads! On the last few now but most has been removed! Final 5 odd pages to go...
 

HoddzDJ

Active member
Hi all. Just a quick question now I have managed to clean up all the spam and hopefully prevent future registrations for spammers. When I look on my forum homepage, I see discussion and message counts not showing correctly, is there a way to rebuild them so that they show the true number?

You can see it in action at http://www.pukkaradio.net/community
 

Jake Bunce

XenForo moderator
Staff member
Hi all. Just a quick question now I have managed to clean up all the spam and hopefully prevent future registrations for spammers. When I look on my forum homepage, I see discussion and message counts not showing correctly, is there a way to rebuild them so that they show the true number?

You can see it in action at http://www.pukkaradio.net/community
Rebuild the thread and forum info:

Admin CP -> Tools -> Rebuild Caches

The forum stats in the sidebar will update within 10 minutes of these counters.
 

David_

Active member
So I have had an xenForo install on my site since it was first released and there was never really a problem for spam. I thought I'd check it out, as I do every week, and noticed I now have 15,000 posts and nearly 600 members. 99% of this is all spam!

Is there an easy way to go through and remove it all and prevent it?
Shut it down and switch to a forum solution that provides better spam control.

Sorry but Xenforo lacks pretty hard on the entire spam clean up and controls method.
 

Floren

Well-known member
I just started to get tons of fake users from United States. I guess they got smart and realized the funny countries are blocked. With the developers gone, good luck on finding a quick solution to current problem. I saw that adminextra are using a manual approval of new registrations, is this an option in XenForo or a plugin?
 

Jake Bunce

XenForo moderator
Staff member
Sorry but Xenforo lacks pretty hard on the entire spam clean up and controls method.
With the developers gone, good luck on finding a quick solution to current problem.
There is no lacking or luck about it. See this resource for a comprehensive list of spam tools:

http://xenforo.com/community/resources/dealing-with-forum-spam.980/

Q&A is the easiest and one of the most effective solutions, and it is built-in to XenForo. But you need to setup your own questions:

Admin CP -> Home -> Options -> User Registration -> Use Question & Answer CAPTCHA

Let me know if you need help with any of this. I am available.

I saw that adminextra are using a manual approval of new registrations, is this an option in XenForo or a plugin?
It's built-in. I generally don't recommend moderation of accounts unless you have some way to know which are good and which are bad. The moderation option is addressed at the end of the resource linked above.
 

arcaneex

Active member
I found out that using just Open ID ( facebook , steam , twitter etc) and clearing all registration forms , including login forms solves the issue!
Not a single spam ever since.
 

Naatan

Well-known member
I found out that using just Open ID ( facebook , steam , twitter etc) and clearing all registration forms , including login forms solves the issue!
Not a single spam ever since.
So basically you seriously inconvenience legid users and likely take a huge cut to your conversion rate in order to get rid of spam? There are better solutions. The anti spam plugins available do a decent job for me, the little bit of spam that gets through then needs to be manually moderated. It sucks but automated tools can only do so much.

I've also found that using Questions for verification is far more efficient than captcha.
 

arcaneex

Active member
So basically you seriously inconvenience legid users and likely take a huge cut to your conversion rate in order to get rid of spam? There are better solutions. The anti spam plugins available do a decent job for me, the little bit of spam that gets through then needs to be manually moderated. It sucks but automated tools can only do so much.

I've also found that using Questions for verification is far more efficient than captcha.
My forum community isn't based off search engines nor advertising.
The forum is about trading in the Steam gaming platform , and as always there are people which scam others. Thats why we force steam association , if someone gets scammed we basically ban him , report to Steam and he gets marked as a Scammer all across the Steam trading communities.
So we kill two birds with one stone.
 

Toxic

Member
Install xenutiles and get API codes for the three services it uses (stopforumspam, botscout, fspamlist) to help curb new spammers signing up.. also change captcha to Q&A (or install keycaptcha).

To get rid of them, you'll have to do it one user at a time.. To delete their posts, delete the user and send the info to the spammer lists, click the 'spam' link under their post. You'll see a nice pop-up. Do that for each spam you see and you'll see that it is cleaning up pretty nicely. Even if its a different user, it will look for other users using the same IP.. I doubt there are 600 different IPs on there..

There are also some other spam-related posts recently.. we've all been forced to lock down a bit more lately..
I also set Registered users as Moderated until the 5th post when they are upgraded to another Member group that allows them to post without moderation. the normal user will not mind this minor incursion
 
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