OK so everyone is wondering, no doubt. I've seen the comments and - since we are having a parallel discussion about it on the admin area - we thought it would be a good idea to let you guys know WTF was going on. A lot of what is below is cut/pasted directly from that original admin post.
So. Now you know whats going on. In case you didn't know, what spammers tend to do is register fake users and then let them sit and look innocent - just another lurker. You'll even see them read a few threads to change their activity stats. Its all automated. Basically they are sleeper agents. At a certain point they post spam and get banned. But there are hundreds more waiting to be activated behind them.On 8/31 of last year, we were asked by MagnumClub to dial down the controls of our anti-spam prevention software a little bit because he was getting a lot of complaints of false positives and people could not register. I don't blame him, nothing says "Go F yourself" like trying to register for a forum and being told you can't because you are a spammer.
Unfortunately, that in turn lead to this:
That is our weekly registrations... note that before September, we averaged between 140-180 registrations a week. Beginning in September (with the dialed down settings) that jumped to anywhere between 300-500. Then all hell breaks loose. There were a couple weeks in November where we broke 1,000 registrations in a week, then in January we had over 2,000 registrations in ONE WEEK!!!
Around the first week of the month the settings were dialed back up to being very strict, and now we are back to normal registrations. However, we have TWO problems:
1) The floodgates were open so long we have become a target for spammers. I just checked the spam logs and we get upwards of 750 spam rejected registrations PER DAY ! (many are duplicate of the same user however, so the true number is well south of that). They aren't getting through, so really this is a 'problem' that will likely take care of itself and no one will know any better. The spammers will get sick of trying to register and go hammer someone else.
2)Here's the real problem: We have thousands upon thousands of "sleeper cell" bots that registered during our lax time. You've probably noticed every day we get 5 or 6 posts from spambots. Well, I noted they all registered during the "free play" time period and get activated randomly to post up their garbage.
Sooo....in a nutshell. No more bots are signing up. But a bunch of their buddies are already in.
I know some people have been blaming the forum upgrade but if you think back this problem started surfacing just before then.
We're working on solving the problem. Worst case we go in and delete the sleepers as best we can by hand.
Last edited by MattRobertson; 02-24-2012 at 12:23 PM.
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Did you put in software that sends them all to Legmakers forum? Cause that's just hilarious
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Really? Ouch. Maybe Lance is behind all this.
Not sure where your bots are coming from, but are you doing any filtering by country/region on certain net blocks? I did that for an ecommerce site and it cut my fraud down to almost nothing. I used to have scammers ordering small items as a method to verify stolen credit card numbers were still active.
If said bag o' douche was behind it , he would have ''borrowed'' the idea from another spammer .......and then ****ed that guy over . Poor Chris . I keep telling the non legmaker spammers ( few and far between ) that they are posting in the wrong section......lol .
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And we think we have it. Can't say anything publicly cuz you never know if spies will listen in, but DMag found out something useful.