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Author Topic: New Anti-Spam, Anti-Bot Features  (Read 931 times)

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Offline JimStanmore

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New Anti-Spam, Anti-Bot Features
« on: September 11, 2010, 07:41:01 PM »
skatingforums now has a higher level of protection from spammers and email harvesters.  We are using Project Honeypot (http://www.projecthoneypot.org) to detect and stop malicious bots before they even view the site.  That way they can't even get to posts to see posted email addresses or links.

Up to today we had been only using Stop Spammer and the admins have been disapproving several bot registrations a day - I removed 18 today before I installed the Project Honeypot feature.  Now they cannot register or get at the site at all.

Downside: Project Honeypot tracks malicious behavior from IP addresses all of the world and rates suspicious behavior on a scale based on the amount of activity over the last 90 days.  Most of us do not have a fixed IP address and may get one that was used be a spammer in the past.  If it is a low threat, you may have to answer a question on a warning page.  If it was a high threat you will not be able to access the site.


IF YOU GET THE WARNING PAGE:
-  You can unplug your router and wait 3 or 4 minutes before powering it back up.  This will give you a new IP address.

-  Check your computer for viruses and trojans.  Most spam, bots and attacks are sent from unsuspecting user's computers.  You must keep your anti-virus and anti-trojan software up to date.  Your computer may be infected, as the warning page says, so being "caught" alerts you to the fact that it needs to be cleaned up.  If your computer was getting slow, cleaning it may speed it back up, BTW.


I am an IT person by profession and I could go on and on about this problem.  I will say that I haven't had any problems since I started using Avast and Zone Alarm (free) a couple of years ago and I put them on every computer I work with.

So, we are a lot safer now.  Between the 3 or 4 packages installed we can catch 99% of the human or robot spammers and harvesters.  For the rest, we depend on forum members to report suspicious posts to me or one of the mods.

If you are caught by the Honeypot, I apologize.  (Only 1 member has had to answer the questions.) The questions it asks are easy for a human being and you've gotten a hint to check your anti-virus and anti-trojan software.  BTW, once you answer the questions, you don't have answer them again from the same IP for 24 hours.

EDIT:
  Many smartphons/PDAs are infected with trojans and send out spam.  Unfortunately, no one has really written anything to clean them yet.  What that means is that many cell carrier IPs may be flagged as a problem.  If you get a "bad" IP address when you connect to the internet you just have to answer two simple questions after you log in to access the site.

Offline jjane45

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Re: New Anti-Spam, Anti-Bot Features
« Reply #1 on: September 11, 2010, 10:01:26 PM »
So I was the lucky member getting flagged, surfing from cellphone! Off to buy lottery tickets...

Thank you so much Jim for making the forum more secure! I'll be fine answering a few questions a day ;)