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What's your experience with spam accounts?

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by yavuz, Feb 10, 2013.

  1. yavuz

    yavuz Well-Known Member

    Lately my forum's user registrations are going up. Definitely a good thing is happening but on the other side spam registration attempts have just become ridiculous. For every valid one registration there are 5 spam registration attempts?!

    I have several spam prevention tools installed. Like Jaxel's XenTools, Chris Deemings Registration Timer. These two in combination with Q&A method stopped my spam headache.

    What is your experience with spam accounts? Have you been successful stopping them?
  2. Chris D

    Chris D XenForo Developer Staff Member

    It's going to happen, there's not a lot you can do to actually prevent them attempting to register.

    You can only prevent them from completing the registrations which obviously those add-ons are doing.

    If the 5:1 ratio of registrations is sapping up your resources, e.g. if you're on a shared host then you might want to check out this add-on:

    If you're on a VPS or dedicated server, really, there's not much more you can do - nor will it really be a big problem. Just let it happen.
    yavuz likes this.
  3. MattW

    MattW Well-Known Member

    XenUtiles along with KeyCaptcha has been stopping 99.99% of spam registrations on my site. The 0.01% that are getting through are human spammers, but again, it's really easy to find and deal with them with XenUtiles installed.
    yavuz likes this.
  4. yavuz

    yavuz Well-Known Member

    The number hasn't been an issue really. I just wanted to hear what others were experiencing in terms of fake & spam accounts. I also have the "First time Free" addon installed which requires the user to verify their account. This helps also a lot to eliminate users who just want to register and not be a part of the community.
  5. Adam Howard

    Adam Howard Well-Known Member

    Understand that most spam accounts are generated cyber bots that respond by pre-required terms. If X happens Y happens followed by Z. I've learned that by removing one of those, the spam bot does not always know how to proceed and so doesn't. In my case I did something people wouldn't think of. I turned off e-mail registration.

    This made user registration easier on valid members. Because they can just jump right in & not have to wait for an e-mail. Which can sometimes happen instantly or depending on their e-mail provider (yahoo for example) could take hours or days to process (its been my experience with yahoo) and by the time they do get the conformation e-mail, they may have already forgot signing up & just delete the e-mail never completing the registration. There is also that chance it gets lost in their spam box all together.

    So doing this had improved membership and returning users, while also keeping spam bots out. Because the spam bot will forever hover over their e-mail box looking for an e-mail that will never come.

    This of course is not my only line in the sand. And I would only suggest you do so if you have more than one anti-spam add-on or tweak installed. For example, even upon registering you can't post a link until you have 150 valid post.
  6. mjp

    mjp Well-Known Member

    That's clever.
    You can actually set that to '1' and catch virtually every spammer.

    FoolBotHoneyPot blocks hundreds of signups a day on my forum. When I first added it, it blocked 500-600 a day, but it seems that number has gone down to 100 - 200 recently. Any way you slice it, it's a lot of bots.

    Best $22 I ever spent. I would have paid ten times that, it's that good.

    THIS HAS BEEN AN UNPAID ENDORSEMENT. Though I am available for paid endorsements, corporate training and children's birthday parties.
    Mouth likes this.
  7. Adam Howard

    Adam Howard Well-Known Member

    Actually, no.... They have spam bots that do indeed make a few normal post before they spam. Typically between 1 - 50 post (with 1 - 25 being the average).

    But I also take into account human spam as well. Most spammers aren't going to stick around for that (150 post) ;)
  8. mjp

    mjp Well-Known Member

    I haven't seen those kinds of bots in a long time, but I'm sure they're still out there. A good moderator can spot those "preliminary-posts-before-the-spam" anyway. They aren't terribly convincing or natural.

    Removing the email verification element of registration though, that was a bit of creative thinking genius right there. I imagine that would cut out the vast majority of spam posts. The problem (for me) being the the spam accounts are still there. That's why I like something like FoolBot that blocks the registration completely.
  9. Ditto

    Ditto Member

    The only problem with putting new members in *post moderation* for more than 1 post, doubt they will hang around posting on your forum for long if having their first 10-15 posts being checked before going live.
  10. Adam Howard

    Adam Howard Well-Known Member

    Moderations? We don't use moderation. Post are automatically posted right away. ;)

    We simply deny you the right to post links and tell you this when you first join. And you're reminded of it if you try. The majority of people don't post links when they first join a community unless it is their intention to spam it. :)
  11. Stuart Wright

    Stuart Wright Well-Known Member

    yavuz likes this.
  12. Carlos

    Carlos Well-Known Member

    One day, I woke up to seeing a few of my sites being spammed... I took a look at CODForums first, before everything else, I closed registration, went through each post, and member, cleaned them out (some are banned, some are deleted), installed Jaxel's xenUtilies, and SolveMedia's plugin... Killed 99% of spam.

    I only have to deal with a few spam here and there.... other than that, all is well! :)

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