Attack of the Spam Bots....

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Attack of the Spam Bots....

Postby datahead » 27 Sep 2014 02:54

It looks like we've had quite a few posts from spam bots recently.

If anyone else with foru administration can help, we need to get them banned and their posts deleted.

I've banned some already but probably won't get it all today or maybe even this weekend.

I emailed Quintus asking if he knows how to outright delete a user and all their posts...individually deleting each is tedious.

Whoever is spamming....please stop...
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Re: Attack of the Spam Bots....

Postby datahead » 29 Sep 2014 02:48

Apparently I don't have high enough access to delete all posts by a user, from what I can guess/tell.

I think you need admin access, whereas I have moderator access.

At https://www.phpbb.com/community/viewtop ... &t=1187175 it seems to indicate you need to use the admin control panel to delete all posts by a user, which I don't seem to have.
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Re: Attack of the Spam Bots....

Postby Quintus » 30 Sep 2014 08:04

Yes, it appears I have admin rights and I can delete a user plus his postings. Doing happy deletion right now.

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Re: Attack of the Spam Bots....

Postby Quintus » 30 Sep 2014 08:23

A German satire website recently titled "Revolution on the web: Scientists create program to solve Captchas humans are unable to solve!" Somewhere down the article read: "We hope to make the web more accessible for the visually impaired with our contribution".

That basically says all about Captchas I think.

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Re: Attack of the Spam Bots....

Postby datahead » 30 Sep 2014 17:48

I was wiping some out each day, but they keep coming day after day. I'm a bit worried that individually deleting them I may delete a normal user's post.
There will probably be more in some days unless we've banned enough IP addresses and get lucky.
Thanks, Quintus. We will have to see if maybe FluXy can look into captchas eventually.
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Re: Attack of the Spam Bots....

Postby Quintus » 30 Sep 2014 20:45

datahead wrote:Thanks, Quintus. We will have to see if maybe FluXy can look into captchas eventually.


Read my post again and notice the sarcasm... We DO have captchas already on the registration form.

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Re: Attack of the Spam Bots....

Postby Luiji » 18 Oct 2014 09:36

Whelp, that took awhile. Did quite a bit of pruning myself. I count about 30 names I just wiped. Gotta be careful when numbers are these high, though. It's easy to accidentally delete a legitimate user in these circumstances.
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Re: Attack of the Spam Bots....

Postby datahead » 19 Oct 2014 01:16

Thanks, Luiji. I'm tied up and can't really do many deletions right now. I usually try to at least ban a spammer if I see them posting to "stop the leaky faucet".

I think Quintus is able to delete all posts for a user using admin access (which really helps when a bot posts 30+ entries), but he of course is very busy himself.

I messaged FluXy on this a bit back. Maybe if we found a pHp coder (or expert on this kind of forum system) who knows how to implement an anti spam bot fix for this, he/she could help FluXy.

It's kind of funny because I implemented an optical character recognition technique for a computer vision class once using a technique that was intended to beat captchas. These days captchas have to be really good to thwart spammers. My professor described the OCR technique as being well designed but "not very useful" -- this is evidenced by the number of spam posts we have...
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Re: Attack of the Spam Bots....

Postby datahead » 26 Oct 2014 03:14

Quintus, if this site already has Captchas, what else can be done for a phpBB based forum to reduce the spam bots?
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Re: Attack of the Spam Bots....

Postby datahead » 28 Oct 2014 08:17

As some of you may have noticed, we have lots of mysterious posts showing up from "Daniel Vodo" on the forum summary pages, but no posts for him show up in the actual forum postings. Quintus tried to delete all of this spam bots postings (200+) using an admin feature, and it crashed with an out of memory error. Thus Daniel Vodo and its (appropriate pronoun for a useless spam bot) posts were deleted, but records in the change history on the forum summaries are still showing up.

The solution to wipe Daniel Vodo from a given forum posting is:
1. Create a junk reply on the respective forum posting
2. Delete that reply.
3. Double check - Daniel Vodo's change record on the forum summary should be gone. This forum posting should now sort properly by last modified date in the summary view.

I'll probably clean some of them up slowly over time with this procedure, but it may be some time. Having a messed up sort order on the forum overviews is annoying...
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Re: Attack of the Spam Bots....

Postby Luiji » 03 Nov 2014 18:42

Out of memory? Really? How the fuck did they program this forum.

Code: Select all
BEGIN
DELETE * FROM Posts JOIN Members ON Posts.MemberID = Members.MemberID WHERE Members.Name = "Daniel Vodo";
DELETE * FROM Members WHERE Members.Name = "Daniel Vodo";
COMMIT


The most complicated version of the way they should delete members without memory exhaustion.
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Re: Attack of the Spam Bots....

Postby datahead » 05 Nov 2014 06:43

Out of memory? Really?


+1 for Quintus's new Ruby forum
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Re: Attack of the Spam Bots....

Postby datahead » 09 Nov 2014 06:32

Wow, they seem to have stopped for a while... :)
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Re: Attack of the Spam Bots....

Postby sydneyjd » 25 Nov 2014 00:01

Hmm, did i get most of the spam posts? I have been working on it a while...
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Re: Attack of the Spam Bots....

Postby datahead » 25 Nov 2014 00:37

The most recent post shows up in each major forum category. If you just deleted 90+ posts one by one, we might consider asking Quintus if you could have admin rights some time soon so that you can delete a group of posts for a user.
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Re: Attack of the Spam Bots....

Postby datahead » 25 Nov 2014 00:39

...though I guess, as Quintus suggested, this brings the risk of another out of memory issue in PhPBB...
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Re: Attack of the Spam Bots....

Postby sydneyjd » 25 Nov 2014 02:10

Ive talked to Quintus about that, and i preferable do not want to crash the server. ;) When this thing goes down, its a sunk ship. Unless Fluxy shows up again.
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Re: Attack of the Spam Bots....

Postby datahead » 25 Nov 2014 03:24

When this thing goes down, its a sunk ship. Unless Fluxy shows up again.


I think a "debris" covered war zone is a better analogy...Take a look at all the "DanielVodo" spam references in the forum overview pages -- some can be eliminated by making a post and deleting it, but some cannot. They will be there...FOREVER...

"May Daniel Vodo be with you..."
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Re: Attack of the Spam Bots....

Postby Luiji » 02 Dec 2014 14:38

datahead wrote:
When this thing goes down, its a sunk ship. Unless Fluxy shows up again.


I think a "debris" covered war zone is a better analogy...Take a look at all the "DanielVodo" spam references in the forum overview pages -- some can be eliminated by making a post and deleting it, but some cannot. They will be there...FOREVER...

"May Daniel Vodo be with you..."


Fixed that a week and a half ago. :P
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Re: Attack of the Spam Bots....

Postby To4ooo4 » 02 Jan 2015 01:53

datahead wrote:Apparently I don't have high enough access to delete all posts by a user, from what I can guess/tell.

I think you need admin access, whereas I have moderator access.

At https://www.phpbb.com/community/viewtop ... &t=1187175 it seems to indicate you need to use the admin control panel to delete all posts by a user, which I don't seem to have.


You do. I made a test phpBB3 forum and you need admin access. Also, it's A LOT harder to detect bots. THE FORUMS COME WITH THEM, ODDLY.


EDIT: It also won't let me access the Moderation Control Panel despite being able to access the administration control panel. You realize people that can use it see our I.P. address(es) , right?
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