Howdy all,

I have a forum that I am trying to get started, but the spam is getting out of control. I'm getting about 8 new fake members from the same spammer daily now. I know its from the same person because I have noticed the board language is always set to Albanian.

It used to be only 2 or 3 new members a day (created just for spam), but now its 8 or 9 - and what's worse now, he is putting porn images in the posts.

I have tried

  • image verification
  • email verification
  • custom made script that requires person to answer a simple math problem to proceed. The theory behind this was, if it was a spam bot, it would be stumpped by the extra step (found this solution from a google search).

So far, none of this has worked. I thought of requiring admin approval for new members, but I think that this will discourge anyone from joining, especially since it is a new forum. Even then, I won't know if he is a spammer or a legitimate member until he's been accepted as a member.

Any one have any suggestions? I'm out of ideas.



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All 11 Replies

If anyone has any advice at all, I would greatly appreciate it.

I just deleted 14 new members and posts from my forum (same spammer), all posts about pills and porn. Again, this person has the board language set to albanian in all member ids.

This spammer is driving me nuts. I'm getting a minimum of 10 new spam ids a day from this person now and its getting very time consuming to clean up after this guy.

Each time he is coming from a different ip address and email.

What can this guy be gaining from spamming my forum? Its new and has a page rank of zero. Wouldn't backlinks be worthless at this point?

Somebody, please help! :(

I hate to break this to you, but if you've already spent plenty of time IP banning this guy's accounts, deleting them and all his posts, and nothing works to deter him or her, then it's time to move on to another host.

Really, all this extra stress is not worth your time. You're better off starting fresh and moving to another location where this person won't be able to find you.

Thanks Juiced. Do you mean another domain name or web host? I have other sites on the same host and they are not having problems.

Anyone else have any suggestions? I deleted 18 spam members today. It just seems to keep getting worse. I really don't want to change my domain name, I have already put a lot of work into this.


Use CAPTCHA images during the registration process, require users to activate their emails by clicking a link, permanently ban members when their email addresses bounce back (don't delete them because then they can recreate their accounts), and block email domains if you see they're being used primarily by spammers ( emails, for example).

Listen to Dani - her hard work has paid off at DaniWeb where the spam problem has not gone away (it never will) but has been reduced so dramatically that as far as most members are concerned it has gone away.

Thanks Dani and Happygeek. I'll give that a try. I already have the captcha and email activation, but I've been deleting the members.

What about the website links on their profile, they are putting links to adult sites on some of them - should I delete those links as well.



A lot of spammers will register and never post just for the free link to their website in their member profiles. You can curb this type of registration spam by only allowing registered members to view member profiles. Spammers will see that it does them no good to have a link to their site in a profile because it won't be able to be spidered by the search engines (so it won't have the SEO effect), and the registered members won't see their profiles b/c, with no posts, they'd have no way of finding them. So doing that will curb registration spam.

In the meantime, delete the website links in their profile if it's an adult site.

Make sure you have enabled the setting to not let more than one member register with the same email address. Then, do not delete the member accounts of spammers because that frees up their email address for them to just re-register it. Instead, permanently ban them.

The only thing I found working is changing the post variables in the register process.

Spammers use bots, that know your forum software. So for instance if you are using the X software they know that they must post to the index.php?action=register page with variables like username, password, passwordAgain, etc.

If you can change those variables, 99% of the bots wont be able to register to your forum.

Thanks all, for your help and suggestions :) . I think I found a solution by altering some of the php code in the registration pages. So far, two days spam free!

I don't want to say specifically what I did because I think I picked up the spammer either here at daniweb or at digitalpoint, as these are the only two places that I have my forum link in the signature.

If anyone is having a problem with spam in their phpBB forum, pm me and I will tell you how to look and see if it was the same person who was spamming me, and what I did to stop it.

Thanks again all!

That is very common problem, I dont know much about forums codes but some forums uses some rules like : Signature links allow after certain number of posts or time, no live links in the message for some time. etc


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