Dealing with Forum Spammers

After having a well earned holiday of 5 days in the amazingly beautiful Valencia (Spain), I came back to 2 of my forums being attacked by a host of spammer bots. On Electric Bandits, which is a very new forum, they had managed to post about 50 posts advertising drugs, sex aids and more. When I logged onto the forum I could actually see the bots registering via the ‘Who's Online' page so I realised I had to do something sooner rather than later.

The current version of Vbulletin (3.7) has many features to help you deal with spammers. You can select several posts and delete them as spam and by doing this you also get the option to ban them and mark all their posts as spam. It works really well. However, this is more of a treatment and not a preventer ie. it doesn't stop the bots registering in the first place.

There are a few hacks available but the first one I tried, called No Spam!, seems to be working very well. All it does is add a question to the registration page, something which the bots won't know. For example, you could ask the question ‘Is a banana yellow or blue' or something else which is similarly obscure.

I get spam quite frequently on my blogs but I don't recall ever having a spam attack such as this in the past, hopefully it isn't a sign of things to come.

Kevin

p.s. if you are a spammer, feel free to stick a sharp pencil in your left eye and twist, it's the least you can do!!