Preventing Spam in 3.0.5 and Lower [*Read First Post*]

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Re: Preventing Spam in 3.0 [*Read First Post*]

Post by speysider » Sun Mar 22, 2009 8:09 pm

JimA wrote:Those bots aren't spambots. They are bots from search engines that come to your board to index it, they aren't meant to spam your board and you shouldn't ban them.
Thank you for explaining. I banned it because it was trying to get into the Control Panels.
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Re: Preventing Spam in 3.0 [*Read First Post*]

Post by PJ69 » Tue Mar 24, 2009 1:35 pm

I find doing it manually is the best option for me, so I have to activate every member & if there's one I'm not sure about, I send them an email asking for them to confirm they're human & not a bot before I activate their account on my forum :D

I currently have one waiting activation due to the username & email address which both seem dodgy to me :roll:
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Re: Preventing Spam in 3.0 [*Read First Post*]

Post by tffnguy » Tue Mar 24, 2009 2:09 pm

I've had two instances where the accounts look legit, the IPs show to be the same as the email servers, the time zone fits the IP and so on, but for some reason the default question that is supposed to cause the error gets used in the new account. Anyone have a clue how this can be? I have activation set to admin only so I don't see a way that they could fill out the registration correctly and then log in and change the custom profile field afterwords because the accounts haven't been activated by me yet.
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Re: Preventing Spam in 3.0 [*Read First Post*]

Post by abhishek1711 » Wed Mar 25, 2009 1:45 pm

strangely even after having a anti-spam question - are you human with default answer NO (means cant register), i still see seemingly spam registrations with email ids like sucors@turbo-mail.ru

so the bots can beat this too ? what's next !

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Re: Preventing Spam in 3.0 [*Read First Post*]

Post by tffnguy » Wed Mar 25, 2009 2:29 pm

Obviously there is some sort of bug in the registration or custom profiles that allows spammers to skirt around the custom profile? This shouldn't be possible otherwise. I can see where they they could take the time to figure out a or the correct answer to the custom profile question, but to make it through using the wrong answer shouldn't be happening.

If I didn't have the registration set to Admin then accounts like this would get activated. :evil:
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Re: Preventing Spam in 3.0 [*Read First Post*]

Post by ChrisRLG » Wed Mar 25, 2009 10:23 pm

thier is no bug in the custom profile fields - if you have them set up correctly so they are required with a default which is invalid they should work.

However the simple yes/no one will be answered by bots 50% of the time right ;)

So you need to use the number version which it will find harder.
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Re: Preventing Spam in 3.0 [*Read First Post*]

Post by tffnguy » Wed Mar 25, 2009 11:12 pm

ChrisRLG wrote:thier is no bug in the custom profile fields - if you have them set up correctly so they are required with a default which is invalid they should work.
I beg to differ with you. If they pick the incorrect answer that is set to give the message that a field needs to be answered then a human has no choice but to pick one of the 5 other answers or give up. When I set up the custom field I tried to setup a test account many times picking the same answer. It don't happen. You either change it or quit trying. I've tried it again numerous times after the two accounts that made it through that had the wrong answer in the profile and the same thing. No getting in.
ChrisRLG wrote:However the simple yes/no one will be answered by bots 50% of the time right ;)

So you need to use the number version which it will find harder.
Its a drop down with 6 options. One of course is the one bots have always picked and that's why it went from at least 25 spam accounts per day to none except for to spam accounts I think had to have been tests by spammers and the two where the custom field answer that should have kept them out didn't. That answer was in their profile. Now the only way I can see that that could happen is for them to be able to change the answer once they were able to get registered, but since I have it setup for verification by Admin only that shouldn't have been possible because I didn't activate the accounts.
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Re: Preventing Spam in 3.0 [*Read First Post*]

Post by onehundredandtwo » Thu Mar 26, 2009 6:45 am

Rather than using a drop-down box you should use a text-box, this way there could be millions of combinations for the answer.
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Re: Preventing Spam in 3.0 [*Read First Post*]

Post by tffnguy » Thu Mar 26, 2009 11:37 am

onehundredandtwo wrote:Rather than using a drop-down box you should use a text-box, this way there could be millions of combinations for the answer.
At first I did have both the drop down and a text box, but except for the four mentioned accounts the drop down has been fine. The answer also fits well in the displayed profile where the text answer didn't. The only problem I see with the way I have it is the two accounts that made it through with the wrong answer that should have stopped them. The custom profile question IS setup correctly and working fine, but evidently there is a way around it as those two accounts would show. It would be nice to know exactly how they get around it. If this was something that was happening daily I'd add something else, but this has been over something like a month's period.
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Re: Preventing Spam in 3.0 [*Read First Post*]

Post by Obliduty » Thu Mar 26, 2009 5:46 pm

I would like to use CJ Jacksons method, since I have that WP plug, however I don't know where I should put check.php? On my WP folder or Forum or what.

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Re: Preventing Spam in 3.0 [*Read First Post*]

Post by munque » Fri Mar 27, 2009 3:58 pm

onehundredandtwo wrote:Rather than using a drop-down box you should use a text-box, this way there could be millions of combinations for the answer.
That's what I do, but it requires a mod. The text questions available for custom profiles have no mechanism to flag a wrong answer, from what I've seen.

You could use the number field. Tell them to type in "33" for example. Then set the minimum and maximum options to 33. Then registration will fail unless the bot or human enters 33. Failure to do so will give a prompt telling them the minimum or maximum, but the bot has to be programmed to read the promt and respond accordingly. Not likely yet.

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Re: Preventing Spam in 3.0 [*Read First Post*]

Post by tffnguy » Fri Mar 27, 2009 4:39 pm

My apology for starting a false alarm. I finally nailed down what is happening on the wrong answer deal. Once a custom field is setup it only shows up in the profiles of those who have registered after it was setup. It is in everyone's profile and comes up as the default wrong answer, but doesn't show up for others to see it until it gets changed.

Now... I have the board set not to allow users to change their own email address so when someone tries they get deactivated. I get the email saying a new account has been added or deactivated and go to check the account. In the two instances I've noticed the wrong answer and took it as new accounts with the wrong answer and assumed it was a spam account and nuked them. It wasn't that the person changed that profile it was just set that way as default. I guess I had better start exploring deeper before assuming that if an account has a wrong answer it is a spam account. :oops:
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Re: Preventing Spam in 3.0 [*Read First Post*]

Post by onehundredandtwo » Fri Mar 27, 2009 9:00 pm

munque wrote:That's what I do, but it requires a mod. The text questions available for custom profiles have no mechanism to flag a wrong answer, from what I've seen.
Sorry, you're right, you must use a MOD for a textarea, but it seems tffnguy has fixed his problem anyway.
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Re: Preventing Spam in 3.0 [*Read First Post*]

Post by Quietust » Tue Mar 31, 2009 5:35 pm

One somewhat annoying side effect of using the Custom Profile Field method of blocking spambots (which, I should point out, is working quite well for me so far) is that there is no way to hide them from Administrators and Moderators - normal users don't see them, but Admins and Moderators will see them cluttering up Topics and Profile pages and everywhere else that shows them.
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Re: Preventing Spam in 3.0 [*Read First Post*]

Post by Mick » Wed Apr 01, 2009 7:05 am

Why?

Double check your cusom profile field settings or post a screen shot here. Mine don't show up anywhere except on the registration screen.
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