Spambots.........

Discussion in 'Ask the White Tower' started by Narysse a'Jahar, Apr 29, 2019.

  1. Narysse a'Jahar

    Narysse a'Jahar Aes Sedai

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    So I am starting to notice that we have had a huge influx of spambots lately and am getting a little tired of constantly seeing spambot posts everywhere.

    Is there something we can do to remedy this?
     
  2. Elania al'Manir

    Elania al'Manir Aes Sedai Forum Moderator

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    If you're talking about this past weekend and the days around it specifically, a lot of the people who normally delete the spam ASAP have been busy with JordanCon. It should return to normal soon.

    We're also aware of extra spam over a longer period of time, and have brainstormed solutions. One of those is that the Director of Mods and Ops reviews email addresses used to sign up for the spammy accounts and periodically bans domains that seem to have no other value. The mod team has talked about other solutions as well, but I don't remember them off the top of my head, and the conversation seems to be buried somewhere in a thread. :lol
     
  3. Alora Sionn

    Alora Sionn Gaidin Outreach Activities Coordinator

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    One thing I was wondering, is the secret word thing (who wrote the wheel of time) is supposed to stop the automated account creation that bots tend to use, so if they are still getting in and in large numbers doesn't this mean that they have this code word saved or something? Would changing it up every year or so help?
     
  4. Elania al'Manir

    Elania al'Manir Aes Sedai Forum Moderator

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    @Nymala Ingasy or @Deoan Kakarot (or maybe @Arie Davion or @Defen Estrator) will have to answer that question. I would assume it's possible, but I don't know the extent to which it would help. How are the bots getting the answer in the first place? How often would we need to change it? Etc.
     
  5. Thaddius al'Guy

    Thaddius al'Guy Soldier Forum Moderator

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    I was once part of a forum that had a rule that no free domains (hotmail, gmail, etc.) could sign up, you had to have something, like a work or school email, or your own domain email. It's way more restrictive, but it greatly controlled the spam problems they had. I'm pretty sure that it would not work in this situation. Perhaps there could be another two step authentication that the account has to be approved before you can post, though this would require someone to look through the requests to approve them. This could be solved with when signing up for an account (I'm not sure if this is done already, it's been years since I signed up) but have them answer a coherent question that a bot probably couldn't fill in.

    I'd be willing to cull obviously fake accounts as I see it a lot with the work I do, so if that direction is ever taken, you have a volunteer.
     
  6. Alyria Savoinya

    Alyria Savoinya Aes Sedai

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    I take great pleasure in reporting spam posts, but I was out this week :cheese

    Also it really bums me out that they choose actually cool WOT-themed names.
     
  7. Elania al'Manir

    Elania al'Manir Aes Sedai Forum Moderator

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    I think we did look into having a review process before someone's allowed to post, and could go over it again. We would have to make sure that enough Admins or Directors have access to do that, though, so that we don't leave actual new members hanging for too long. Also, as Alyria has brought up, they're being smart with their names lately. It's not always obvious that they're a spammer until after they've posted.
     
  8. Arie Davion

    Arie Davion Matron Mother of Mischief Aes Sedai Master of the Watch

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    Part of it is I'm in the process of moving and not clearing out the 5-10 bots that register daily. I wish I could say the amount is abnormal, but it isnt.
     
  9. Rhed al'Tere

    Rhed al'Tere Mother Amyrlin Seat

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    Also! If folks can post in a thread they’ve reported, that can help others know that they don’t need to report. The Mod Squad is getting overwhelmed by reporting threads.
     
  10. Ephrem Elpidius

    Ephrem Elpidius Citizen

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    The existential question is this. Do all of you seriously want to take this great joy away from Alyria by fixing the said problem? What monsters! I want nothing to do with any of you, Joy Destroyers!!!

    :rofl

    In all seriousness though, how many actual new people sign up per year? Probably could make it a bit tougher, like email asking random questions about wheel of time, their interest in it, etc. To gauge English levels, etc. Most bots probably just do copy/paste spam and won't even reply to emails like that.
     
  11. Stasia t'Andrei

    Stasia t'Andrei Aes Sedai

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    Thank you, as someone who has been reporting those threads I was actually wondering about that.
     
  12. Ilverin Matriam

    Ilverin Matriam Aes Sedai Historian

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    I stopped reporting ever since someone said stop reporting them :look So I guess Alyria has the job of reporting them for me :lol
     
  13. Nymala Ingasy

    Nymala Ingasy Glitter Guardian Aes Sedai Director of Mods and Ops Forum Moderator

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    I walked in the door from JCon about 15 minutes ago. My apologies for the spam bots. They will be removed promptly.
     
  14. Narysse a'Jahar

    Narysse a'Jahar Aes Sedai

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    That sounds like a great idea, Rhed. I was wondering the same thing as Stasia. Maybe that needs to be a pinned announcement somewhere.
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2019
  15. Alyria Savoinya

    Alyria Savoinya Aes Sedai

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    Oh okay will do, I will post when I report them :lol
     
  16. Aran Cherubim

    Aran Cherubim Resident Citizen

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    I just reported a thread that was posted a couple of minutes ago. I avoided posting in it since it's generally been frowned upon on other sites I've been on - but this is a good advice to lessen the mods' burden.
     
  17. Mendo Cath

    Mendo Cath Voidbringer Aes Sedai

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  18. Nymala Ingasy

    Nymala Ingasy Glitter Guardian Aes Sedai Director of Mods and Ops Forum Moderator

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    Thank you, Mendo. :)
     
  19. Polegnyn Nemeara

    Polegnyn Nemeara Aes Sedai

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    So... does one's post count go down if they report a spambot thread, post it has been reported, and then the thread deleted? Asking for a friend... :look
     
  20. Ilverin Matriam

    Ilverin Matriam Aes Sedai Historian

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    I think they do, after I have reported some bots, my post count went back down, so it only makes sense :cheese