Breakfast Spam

Discussion in 'Feedback and Suggestions' started by jpanhalt, Jun 30, 2009.

  1. jpanhalt

    Thread Starter AAC Fanatic!

    Jan 18, 2008
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    This morning's (GMT -4 DST) spam attack complete with a blog made me think about possible additional anti-spam measures. Our moderators do a great job, but are entitled to sleep and to have an occasional holiday. Those inevitable gaps are an open door to spammers.

    Two suggestions:

    1) Can a quarantine classification be created such that when posts or individual posters are reported by two or more members* as spam, then all posts within the past 24 hours (or other flag to be set by the moderators) by that user will be put in quarantine until reviewed by a moderator? Posts in quarantine would not be viewable until released by a moderator. This would allow 24-hour coverage and allow members to participate, yet leave final decision making to the moderators.

    *To prevent an obvious counter attack by spammers, I think the trigger for quarantining should be limited to members and not include junior memebers. Junior members could still report spam, but their reports would be subject to review before any action was taken.

    2) Increase the minimum time between posts by junior members or new threads. There are obvious problems with this approach. Something in the range of 30 minutes to an hour might allow time to respond to spam, yet not inhibit legitimate new members unduly.

    John
     
  2. Wendy

    Moderator

    Mar 24, 2008
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    That or deputise trusted members to put spam on hold pending review. I just flagged another guy selling electronic parts.
     
  3. bertus

    Administrator

    Apr 5, 2008
    15,638
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    Hello,

    In my oppinion the forum leaders are not spread well over the time zones.


    beenthere Missouri, USA (GMT -6)



    Dave United Kingdom (GMT)


    hgmjr Tennessee, USA (GMT-5)



    thingmaker3 Portland, Oregon GMT -8


    jrap Toronto, Canada



    Dave is the only one in europe the rest is in america or canada.

    Greetings,
    Bertus
     
  4. SgtWookie

    Expert

    Jul 17, 2007
    22,182
    1,728
    I've flagged a couple of newbies in the last couple of hours, both of which originated in China, as were the last several spam attacks.
     
  5. Wendy

    Moderator

    Mar 24, 2008
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    Where you are at isn't so important as what your hours are. Since I'm 3rd shift I might as well be in China.
     
  6. studiot

    AAC Fanatic!

    Nov 9, 2007
    5,005
    513
    Be warned

    The 'breakfast spam' I've seen here is blatant overt stuff. Annoying but easily avoidable.

    In another professional forum a new breed of spammer seems to have arisen.
    These creatures use the member signature function to advertise their wares, whilst joining as members and posting innocuous replies to genuine threads.
     
  7. jpanhalt

    Thread Starter AAC Fanatic!

    Jan 18, 2008
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    There was also a recent phantom spammer who ostensibly was responding to a thread (it happened to be an older thread). The response didn't make much sense and seem almost to be machine "intelligence." That is, it was not gibberish, but it added nothing concrete. The spammer provided a link to an "example," which was actually the spam. In this specific case, it was to an on-line gambling site.

    I think the system here works pretty well, except for the few gaps we have when the moderators must be sleeping. ;) That is why I suggested some sort of member-initiated quarantine.

    John
     
  8. Wendy

    Moderator

    Mar 24, 2008
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    Amphetamines. They must have Amphetamines!
     
  9. bertus

    Administrator

    Apr 5, 2008
    15,638
    2,344
    Hello john,

    I spotted those phantom users also and have reported the frequently.
    The messages seem to be scanned on spam, but the signatures not.

    You mean somthing like they have at dutchforce.

    There they have the "spamminator taskforce":
    http://www.dutchforce.com/~eforum/index.php?showtopic=9176



    Greetings,
    Bertus
     
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2009
  10. Dave

    Retired Moderator

    Nov 17, 2003
    6,960
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    Thanks to everyone who has given input on this. I have spent some of today hardening some elements of the system based on the recommendations in this thread, and will be considering other options.

    John, I shall be having a look at some of you suggestions from the OP. Such a granular system is probably not implementable with the standard software, but we can look at it.

    Dave
     
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