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Scully

Why does spam spread that much all over the prestashop forum?

Question

As to my observation spam postings are more and more to come since moths. Sometimes I have the impression there are more new spam topics than real topics.

 

Why what and why not avoid spam with some simple techniques?

  • Ban user accounts if reported to spread spam (5 days at first, longer if repeatedly reported)
  • Ban ip addresses from where spam has been sent for some time (I know, some IPs might be used by a bunch of users)
  • Use the last option together with browser fingerprint which makes it more reliable.
  • Detect if and how many URLs are posted in a new topic.
  • Detect critical wording in terms of spam.
  • Check the posting memers account in terms of its age.
  • Calculate a spam score.
  • Block users / IP addresses / browsers automatically according to spam score and other reports.
  • Automatically unblock after a certain time.

Of course, we couln't avoid all kind of spam but still reduce it. We use a combination of the above mentionned technics for all our sites. If an IP address or browser fingerprint is detected as spam source, the corresponding address and browser is blocked for a day. If the spam continues in a short period of time - for example 10 days - each additional spam posted adds to the blocking time.

 

And feedback which is NOT SPAM is appreciated.

Edited by Scully (see edit history)

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4 answers to this question

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Thank you for the link posted. I wasn't aware of these issues have already been reported years ago. It wouln't be complicated at all to make some improvements. But somebody had to take care of it. And this seems not to be the case.  I tried to contact Xavier and got:

 

The member Xavier du Tertre cannot receive any new messages

 

Sad sad sad...

Edited by Scully (see edit history)

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Its virtually impossible with the tools we are given to be honest. It would blow your mind how many spam topics are created a night, sometimes several hundred, that you have to go through one-by-one to delete. There is no easy way and they will not budge on adjusting the filters. It has been a hot topic in the moderators forums. 

 

Especially when you have someone like me that can only devote a set amount of time like 30 minutes to an hour a day. I can either spend it answering questions, or flagging spam. I just silently flag spam before I go to bed now. 

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I can understand the perspective of the mods - for sure this isn't funny at all. But the solution must be addressed on a higher level. And this so called higher level (Hello Xavier) spent 3 years without giving tools into the hands of the moderators. That is the real pity.

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