Spammers

WesL

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#1
You may have noticed over the past few days our forum has had quite a few spam messages posted. These messages are coming mostly from India and Pakistan. While we do our best to block bots from spamming our forum, it is hard to keep a human from registering and copy and pasting spam. We are removing these messages, banning the users and taking other methods to keep them from coming back. We could also use your help by using the report function if you see a spam post. Our average time to remove a spam posting is less than 5 minutes.

Thanks for your patience as we work to block the spammers.

Wes
 
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WesL

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The spam attack continued this morning. Thanks to @KoD, @rolltide_130 and @jmills for being on top of things and reporting the posts. With each new spam we get we learn a little more about the team in Pakistan that is doing this. Without giving many details away, I have taken a few more harsh measures to stop them. The sad thing is that these are not bots. These are people making next to nothing to register and copy and paste the text that most of them don't even understand what they are posting.

Either way we will keep blocking their posts and use some other tools to discourage their activity. Keep reporting when you see issues like this. Thanks for all your help.
 
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#4
The spam attack continued this morning. Thanks to @KoD, @rolltide_130 and @jmills for being on top of things and reporting the posts. With each new spam we get we learn a little more about the team in Pakistan that is doing this. Without giving many details away, I have taken a few more harsh measures to stop them. The sad thing is that these are not bots. These are people making next to nothing to register and copy and paste the text that most of them don't even understand what they are posting.

Either way we will keep blocking their posts and use some other tools to discourage their activity. Keep reporting when you see issues like this. Thanks for all your help.
This is a bit of an extreme measure, but one thing that the administrative team at Stormtrack, another one of the weather forums I frequent, does is manually screen and approve each new account one by one. This has completely eliminated spam accounts all together as they actually screen each applicant and require a full name and verification before approving of posting abilities.
 

WesL

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This is a bit of an extreme measure, but one thing that the administrative team at Stormtrack, another one of the weather forums I frequent, does is manually screen and approve each new account one by one. This has completely eliminated spam accounts all together as they actually screen each applicant and require a full name and verification before approving of posting abilities.
It is extreme for sure but something we have discussed doing. Our spam prevention service does a really good job of stopping spammers from even registering. However, in this case, it appears to be a group using several mobile networks mostly in Pakistan. If it was spread out around the world I think I would implement the manual approval process. However, since they are all in one area, I think we can fine tune a few of our tools to help eliminate their access to the site. If all else fails, I have the nuclear option, and my button is "yuge".
 

KoD

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Is there a similarity in their IP addresses that we can use to ban with a wild card, like ban all IPs starting with 192.168.*.* ? Idk if foreign IPs are any different than domestic ones, much like how an area code identifies callers from certain counties.
 

WesL

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Is there a similarity in their IP addresses that we can use to ban with a wild card, like ban all IPs starting with 192.168.*.* ? Idk if foreign IPs are any different than domestic ones, much like how an area code identifies callers from certain counties.
I'm hesitant to mention what we are blocking but subnets are in play at this point. Hope none of you travel to India or Pakistan anytime soon
 

Mike S

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#8
As having worked on the back end of both sites, the spam prevention on this site has been very good. We did manual approvals on the old site and probably had more spammers than legitimate registrations. Jack and I became pretty adept at knowing who the spammers were and very few slipped by. Until the last few days, I've seen very few spammers by comparison. I'm confident this will get fixed.
 

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