Spambot Discussion

Discussion in 'Site Feedback and Suggestions' started by GoldMan27, Nov 18, 2014.

  1. Mint

    Mint YOU KNOW THA $KOUTS Staff Member Moderator

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    Four ways to spot a spambot:
    1. Full lowercase name
    2. Proper name (example: david warne)
    3. Have a link to some marketing product (often vitamins) in their bio.
    4. Use NO punctuation what-so-ever, apart from a full stop at the end of the post.
    Have a nice day.
     
  2. Bunji Craze

    Bunji Craze Member

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  3. Chaotix

    Chaotix .

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    There seems to be one question that troubles me about this Spambot situation:
    If a spambot posts a thread contains the usual spam-stuff, it gets banned. However, if a bot merely posts a status post with a link to a website, does that still mean it qualifies as a spambot and must be banned as such?
     
  4. Hayabusa

    Hayabusa Well-Known Member

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    They may escalate to posting in others profiles or probably create a thread. Either way Spam Bots are annoying and must be dealt with swiftly and silently.
     
  5. Chaotix

    Chaotix .

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    I agree that Spambots are indeed annoying and are potential problems, but in the end, can we ban an account for being likely to create spam?
    Now, I'm merely nitpicking at this point, but this discussion does bring up what qualifies as ban-worthy material, bringing actions from old users such as Pie4lyfe and Danny Cronin back into question (going into old-skool territory now).
     
  6. Sagitarius

    Sagitarius The Stargazing Horokew Kamuy

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    The Adminstrator himself has specified these rules:

    • No sexual content or pornography, or links to any sites with it. This includes signatures. First attempt will get warning points. Further distribution will result in a permanent ban.
    • Please report any spam IMMEDIATELY.
    Given how these Spam-bots are virtually "disposable accounts", it would be meaningless to award them with warning points. If they are not banned swiftly, there will be more piling up and evertually, the forums will be overwhelmed by them. Literally half the new sign-ups are Spam-bots and I believe that it is very necesassary to deal with them, rather than letting them conjest and adding to our problems.

    It is an obvious sign that if an account has a link to an advertisment, it is a Spam-bot, and nothing more or less. We did have instances where the link would lead to a porn site and whatnot and it would be too much of a risk to let them go un-banned.

    As for what counts as "ban-worthy", VashX has made them clear in the past. -> http://pixelgun3dforums.com/index.php?threads/forum-rules-new-members-please-read-this-first.10178/

    EDIT: If the scenario is unheard of, it all comes down to the past verdicts to be used as references or the at-the-spot decision of the moderators. This also raises the need for more moderators however, as GoldMan27 has been the one who generally takes out these Spam-bots, and even he has his life. The others are busy as well and cannot be bothered with. This may sound like a rant, but I question how much thought was put into the planning of timezones, busyness of the staff-members, and schedulings. I have been hearing from many members stating that the forum goes unprotected and unwatched for too often, and many other prominent members (both new and old sign-ups) agree that it may be essential to have more active staff-members to compensate for that lacking surveilance.
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2014
  7. Hayabusa

    Hayabusa Well-Known Member

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    I would suggest a role with a lower rank of a moderator. I was thinking of a senior member who can hide new member accounts, in which a moderator will be alerted and if it's either necessary to ban or issue a warning.
     
  8. Chaotix

    Chaotix .

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    Well, I see your point there. We have enough potential spam as it is, so we just have to continue reporting, as usual.
    Still, this bites. I haven't gotten any more info about these spambots other than that the home page of healthcaresup.com (which seems to already have a rep for spam) contains recent articles that most of these spam bots have been using. For example, the three newest members: Charlesroy1, PatrickzHall, and kashif mirza11 are all advertising Biomuscle-XR, Slimera Garcinia, and Lifeforce T Boost, which are all easily seen on the home page as recent articles. Perhaps I'm making assumptions here, but hopefully we can get an idea about these spambots.
    Anyone else got any more info, by the way?
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2014
  9. GoldMan27

    GoldMan27 Retired Moderator/Lazy Drivers Crew Chief Staff Member

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    In essence, I am generally the "Head Moderator", and Brooke, Gear, and Hero are the Moderators. A senior member with such power though could use that very abusively.

    As it is, I have a keen eye for spam accounts. Banning them just keeps them off the forum temporarily. If we are going to actually eliminate the spam, we either need a spam filter in-place, or to attack it at its source.
    Actually, I never really plan for the timezone part or business of the Moderators. When I hired/requested Moderators in the past, they were generally recommended on the basis of their personalities, maturity, and other such behavioral factors. Truth be told, we don't even have a setup "system" (though we really should), in which we all take shifts. It's more or less "if-you're-on-you're-on" type of duty. The fact I've been able to moderate extensively in the midst of high school is truly a feat for me, but I have no idea how much longer this will hold.

    I will quote myself yet again on the matter of Moderator staff:
    VashX was very strict about the amount of Moderators we should have. He believes we do not need more Moderators, and frankly, I too believe 4 Moderators is enough. The problem is the activity of said Moderators.

    Should there be a time when a Moderator can no longer fulfill his/her duties, said Moderator should immediately be replaced by a more prominent, active, and willing user who has met the requirements to be a Moderator.

    I do not know which of the 3 is least active here, so I will leave it at that. Should a spot open (or VashX make the last exception), I will immediately request/hire RudeWolf as a Moderator. He has the personality, maturity, and timezone function to actively watch the forum during the time the majority of us are asleep/busy.
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2014
  10. Goodman Tim

    Goodman Tim Internet Enthusiast

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    One word(err anagram): CAPTCHA
     
  11. Feesh

    Feesh Friendly Hoovy

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    Would ReCaptcha help?
     
  12. GoldMan27

    GoldMan27 Retired Moderator/Lazy Drivers Crew Chief Staff Member

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    If there has been a CAPTCHA implemented all this time, its apparent our spambots know how to bypass it. Nonetheless, if there hasn't been it would most likely help out with the spambot crisis.
     
  13. Chaotix

    Chaotix .

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    I could have sworn we only had an anagram of the name "Pixel Gun 3D" as our form of CAPTCHA, so it seems it was only a matter of time before that was figured out. A proper CAPTCHA would definitely do the forum some good.
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2015
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  14. GoldMan27

    GoldMan27 Retired Moderator/Lazy Drivers Crew Chief Staff Member

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    Hmm, very well. I'l toss the idea up to Vash and see what he says.
     
  15. GoldMan27

    GoldMan27 Retired Moderator/Lazy Drivers Crew Chief Staff Member

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    Just another tip here in regards to the spambots. If you are unsure if a user is a spambot, type their forum name into google with the word xenforo at the end (E.g., ava ashly xenforo). Google will then show that this profile has participated in several other forum communities. If you get a match with a spam link, its a spambot. If you don't it probably hasn't added itself to other communities yet, or there are no results for the username, in which case said person is not a spambot.
     
  16. Aʟᴇx

    Aʟᴇx Pretty Nocturnal

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    Even with the addition of reCaptcha, spambots are still able to spam the forums.
    I suggest using a Server DDoS Protection System. I once asked the staff in a website (or robot, I don't know) and she said that the Program does offer protection against Spambots.
     
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  17. GoldMan27

    GoldMan27 Retired Moderator/Lazy Drivers Crew Chief Staff Member

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    Ah, you mean DDoS Protection by CloudFlare? I don't know if it would work, however I'l gladly recommend it to him.
     
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  18. AvengingKnight

    AvengingKnight Member

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    So this was the reason behind the Pixel Gun Logo becoming XenForo?
     
  19. Goodman Tim

    Goodman Tim Internet Enthusiast

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    i have never thought spambots to be a huge problem until that one in july that one wrecked the off topic lounge. people will find a way to bypass any defense system using spambots. what we need is a human tat is active working against them. that is the only way to minimize the effects.
     


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