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PostPosted: Fri Feb 23, 2007 6:34 am 
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Slum Lord
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To stem the flood of spambots, all new account requests will be admin approved. My apologies for any delays - please don't hesitate to IM me if I need to be reminded,

To enable me to distinguish between real users and spambots, please include the name of your favourite ep in your registration, or at least something that will convince me that you're a real person.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 27, 2007 7:21 pm 
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Baa'd to the Bone
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The power will go to their HEADS!!!!

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 28, 2007 12:20 am 
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Ianthe Yario wrote:
As in Daria ep?


No, your favorite Dawson's Creek ep. Mine's the one where they all die in gruesome ways....no, that was a dream I had.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 28, 2007 6:18 pm 
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Teeki the Geeki wrote:
Ianthe Yario wrote:
As in Daria ep?


No, your favorite Dawson's Creek ep. Mine's the one where they all die in gruesome ways....no, that was a dream I had.
In other words... Duuh!

Sorry, just adding to the love here.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 11, 2007 12:21 am 
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Slum Lord
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The new version of the Board has just let me delete some 1,000 spambot registrations in about half an hour. It would have taken weeks previously.

It's possible that some legitimate new registrations may have been deleted in the process,

If you've been waiting for activation, please re-register, IM me and let me know.

I'm still working things out, but now that registration is more secure I may be able to move away from having to specifically approve every one.

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2007 5:05 am 
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Slum Lord
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Testing.

Users can now register without admin approval. Let's see how this goes. Two days and no spambots. :-)

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"A great deal of Security is unfortunately just like the underwear of Brittany Spears. If it's even there at all, it is needlessly complex and frilly; looks good without actually covering much; and is far to easy to get around or remove completely."
- David Boston


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 Post subject: Spambots
PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2007 5:28 am 
The bulk of the latest spambots are gone, thus avoiding great instability, but you still have a few hundred mixed into the list.

You might announce a date near at hand when all accounts with only 0 or 1 (or, maybe, 2) posts will be deleted, to allow for any such "real people" to tell you who they are, and then remove all such accounts at once. That would be easier than trying to analyze each one.

This would leave only a handful of the more persistent spam accounts to, then, remove one at a time.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2007 8:06 am 
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That's an excellent suggestion, Greybird. Not only does it make D's job easier, it also gets rid of abandoned accounts all in one hit. Niftiness!

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2007 2:53 am 
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Not a bad idea at all.

Sadly, from what I can see so far though, deleting active accounts is as tedious in this version as it was in the previous one. :-( Still, at least when I delete a spambot account now it won't be replaced by ten new ones.

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"A great deal of Security is unfortunately just like the underwear of Brittany Spears. If it's even there at all, it is needlessly complex and frilly; looks good without actually covering much; and is far to easy to get around or remove completely."
- David Boston


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2007 5:30 am 
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Baa'd to the Bone
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Deref, I wouldn't get too confident about the new antispam software, we've already had one spammer get through at PPMB.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2007 12:19 pm 
Deref wrote:
Sadly, from what I can see so far though, deleting active accounts is as tedious in this version as it was in the previous one. :-(
A bit curious. How, then, did you eliminate over 1,400 bogus accounts from the past few months in one fell swoop when the board was updated? Or did that process do the job by, say, comparing addresses against a spam-domain blacklist?

It seems you've now cleaned out most of the straggling spammers, in any event. With the member list now down from 570 to under 300, almost all of whom have actually posted. That bodes well for keeping things stable.

As does the update's sifting and reworking of the message database. The thread and post counts of each forum had become wildly out of sync with what was actually posted and available, and those counts have now also been fixed.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2007 1:58 pm 
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Little Lamb
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before the upgrade to the board, i attemped to register but my account never got approved. i have to agreee with greybird's idea though.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2007 3:20 pm 
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Deref's culling of the Spambot herd was to inactive bots who'd applied to join the board after the approve new members feature was enacted. Those were sitting in limbo as Inactive Members, and there is a method for bulk deletion.

The second culling of zero posters I did via another process by which we can slide people from active to inactive (or deleted) based on a list of certain qualifications. I shifted everyone with a zero post count over to inactive and then removed any questionable poster. A name or two may have been inadvertently removed, but none of the people I removed had signed into the board after the middle of April. There are still a few Spambots in our midst who have a few post to their names and those will be targeted in our next sweeps.

I apologize JJXB, you were probably caught up in the virtual flood of bots during your first attempt to join the board. We were literally sinking under the onslaught of porn sites and penile extenders and breast enhancers, so any real new member was difficult, if not impossible, to spot sometimes.

As to the now corrected database, I can only assume Gamer, who I probably owe a first born to for all his hard work, cleaned it up in the process of moving, updating, and troubleshooting the board over the last few days.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2007 4:15 pm 
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Little Lamb
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that's ok thea. i can understand that you were being flooded by spambots, i've been through that before on a few of the sites i go to. anyway, most of it's under control from what i can see anyway :)


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2007 8:01 pm 
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RLobinske wrote:
Deref, I wouldn't get too confident about the new antispam software, we've already had one spammer get through at PPMB.


Currently, the board has an image captcha, verifies that email accounts are real and aren't in DNS blacklists, AND requires user confirmation of the sent email. At this point, if it's spamming, it's probably human.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2007 8:04 pm 
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Slum Lord
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Gamer wrote:
RLobinske wrote:
Deref, I wouldn't get too confident about the new antispam software, we've already had one spammer get through at PPMB.


Currently, the board has an image captcha, verifies that email accounts are real and aren't in DNS blacklists, AND requires user confirmation of the sent email. At this point, if it's spamming, it's probably human.

Yeah, I figured that. Nothing's going to stop the human spambots, but hopefully there'll be so few of them that we can easily deal. We'll have to experiment for a while and see what happens, though even if we have to re-instate admin approval it should be pretty easy.

What are your policies over at the PPMB, Richard?

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"A great deal of Security is unfortunately just like the underwear of Brittany Spears. If it's even there at all, it is needlessly complex and frilly; looks good without actually covering much; and is far to easy to get around or remove completely."
- David Boston


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2007 8:26 pm 
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Baa'd to the Bone
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Deref wrote:
Gamer wrote:
RLobinske wrote:
Deref, I wouldn't get too confident about the new antispam software, we've already had one spammer get through at PPMB.


Currently, the board has an image captcha, verifies that email accounts are real and aren't in DNS blacklists, AND requires user confirmation of the sent email. At this point, if it's spamming, it's probably human.

Yeah, I figured that. Nothing's going to stop the human spambots, but hopefully there'll be so few of them that we can easily deal. We'll have to experiment for a while and see what happens, though even if we have to re-instate admin approval it should be pretty easy.

What are your policies over at the PPMB, Richard?


We're still using admin approval, though with four admins, the wait tends to be short.

The spammer that got through was a bland account with a hotmail-type email (with a resonable name) and no profile information given. With something like that, you just have to let them in and see what happens.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 15, 2007 9:13 pm 
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Slum Lord
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RLobinske wrote:
We're still using admin approval, though with four admins, the wait tends to be short.

The spammer that got through was a bland account with a hotmail-type email (with a resonable name) and no profile information given. With something like that, you just have to let them in and see what happens.

Yeah, those were my thoughts too. I think we'll let it ride and see what happens. Genuine registrations are pretty quiet here too, so I suspect our problems may be over. I'm prepared to put up and deal with with the odd spam.

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"A great deal of Security is unfortunately just like the underwear of Brittany Spears. If it's even there at all, it is needlessly complex and frilly; looks good without actually covering much; and is far to easy to get around or remove completely."
- David Boston


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