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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
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    785

    Dealing with forum spam

    Recently the problem is getting worse with customers setting up forums and abandoning them, not checking on them or installing the updates.

    Eventually the captchas on these old forums get cracked and spam floods in, not email spam, just posting ads on the forums, I assume to build incoming links in google.

    The volume of spam is very large and quickly and begins to use alot of CPU, mysql gets very slow.

    Does anyone know of an automated way on the server side to detect and block this type of spam?

    I do not want to have to suspend customer accounts or force them to upgrade, if they abandon the site but are still paying for it, I would rather not put them in a situation where they either forced to do updates or cancel their accounts.
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Louisiana
    Posts
    561
    Google httpbl and honeypot. I have these installed on one of my forums and not a single spam post has made it through.
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Indiana
    Posts
    2,193
    Check out stopforumspam.com, they have plugins for most popular forum apps.
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  4. #4
    I'm assuming that you're ruling out modifying the forum itself--after all it's your customers data, not yours.

    One option you do have is to setup rewrite rules in your httpd.conf to block the spam bots from reaching the website in the first place. Here are some resources you can work with:

    http://diveintomark.org/archives/200..._to_go_to_hell

    http://forums.iis.net/t/1154496.aspx

    http://jeremy.zawodny.com/blog/archives/003862.html
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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Posts
    785
    Thanks for the suggestions.
    The mod_httpbl for apache looks like exactly what I wanted although I haven't tried it yet.

    I knew of stopforumspam.com but that only works with modifying the forum code.

    Yes it needs to be done in apache httpd.conf without modifying the forum code.
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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Maine
    Posts
    59
    We've been using Clouflare with some of our customers and it works as WAF and CDN.
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