Seeking spam protection posibilities

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SpaceFanatic64
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Post #41by SpaceFanatic64 » 08.10.2019, 00:42

But only new accounts with no activity should be deleted, if the account shows signs of activity but later becomes inactive, then it's fine.
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Post #42by Joey P. » 18.10.2019, 05:18

We should also come up with a filter for inappropriate usernames, if that hasn't been discussed before.
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Post #43by Lafuente_Astronomy » 24.10.2019, 01:29

Important announcement:

Alright. Honestly, I delayed doing what I planned to do but starting today, any new accounts with ABSOLUTELY ZERO MESSAGES for 30 days will be removed. Again, inactive members are safe from the purge if they have at least 1 message on the forum so any member who has messaged in this forum is safe, and if he/she wants, can continue to post messages in the Forum. If you have any objections, feel free to message me.
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Post #44by Anthony_B_Russo10 » 24.10.2019, 02:38

I have no objections.
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Post #45by Alexell » 07.11.2019, 16:29

Hi all!
1. We have and always had a confirmation email.
2. Ban IP and ban email - has always been available for moderators. See Moderator Control Panel => Banning (Ban Usernames, Ban IPs, Ban emails).
3. E-Mail Search is an administrative privilege. But now i assigned this priveleges for moderators.
Now you can search users by Email in Administration Control Panel or in Members page => Find a member
4. reCaptcha always works.
5. Unfortunately, the forum engine allows you to use only one tool to protect against spam.
It can be a simple captcha, reCaptcha or text confirmation.

Added after 1 minute 29 seconds:
Do not forget that new registered users can not post on the forum - all of their messages are moderated. Moderators reject spam messages.

Added after 3 minutes 58 seconds:
If moderators need additional privileges, please describe them here.

We can make a text confirmation instead of reCaptcha, but in this case, we need to make such questions, answers to which ONLY CELESTIA USERS and no one else will know. Also, the complexity of the question should not prevent registration for new users who have just started using Celestia and may not yet know all its features.

Added after 1 minute 37 seconds:
Well, if it’s completely cruel, you can make the activation of the account an administrator.
But firstly, I will have to give more privileges to the moderators.
Secondly, this is not done in any large forums, the registration process is always automated.
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Post #46by Anthony_B_Russo10 » 07.11.2019, 16:43

That will help since yesterday was not the first time the Forums was hit with a DDoS attack.
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Post #47by pedro_jg » 07.11.2019, 17:53

In my opinion, something else that could be done is restricting posts on the "Physics and Astronomy" and "Petit Bistro Entropy" sections only to users who have earlier posted elsewhere on the forum. Most of the posts by new users on both sections ends up later revealing itself as spam.

(P.S: Also I consider that it doesn't make much sense to post on these off-topic sections if you aren't going to participate anywhere else on the forums.)

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Post #48by Lafuente_Astronomy » 07.11.2019, 23:11

Alexell wrote:We can make a text confirmation instead of reCaptcha, but in this case, we need to make such questions, answers to which ONLY CELESTIA USERS and no one else will know. Also, the complexity of the question should not prevent registration for new users who have just started using Celestia and may not yet know all its features.

Alexell, if I may. Text confirmation is a good idea just that we have to brainstorm over which questions would satisfy the quality of being known ONLY to Celestia Users. Maybe a question about astronomy can do

Added after 3 minutes 26 seconds:
Also, we have to figure a way to permanently remove the accounts of banned users/users who haven't posted anything eversince their creation. I noticed that though I banned the user, their accounts still remain on the Forum. I discovered it when I did a mass ban on the accounts that have not posted anything eversince their creation (Which appear to be the majority of accounts BTW), I noticed that one of the accounts I massed banned was an account that was already banned before for posting spam links. I would want not just to ban those accounts but remove them as well, since they will bear a heavy electronic weight on the Forum's databanks in the future
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Post #49by Anthony_B_Russo10 » 08.11.2019, 00:32

Agreed
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Post #50by Janus » 08.11.2019, 00:58

A suggestion.
A list to be kept of these removed users.
Not in the database of course, but in a file such as xml or json.
With the name, include the e-mail, IP & current geo tag of the IP.
GEO of IP changes over time, and even with IPV6 can yield useful statistics.

The reason for this is historical reference, and combining it with other sites similarly plagued.
Those lists can help those fighting spam or malware spreading.


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Post #51by Lafuente_Astronomy » 08.11.2019, 01:49

Janus wrote:A suggestion.
A list to be kept of these removed users.
Not in the database of course, but in a file such as xml or json.
With the name, include the e-mail, IP & current geo tag of the IP.
GEO of IP changes over time, and even with IPV6 can yield useful statistics.

The reason for this is historical reference, and combining it with other sites similarly plagued.
Those lists can help those fighting spam or malware spreading.


Janus.

Alright, a Blacklist. What do you think, Alexell?
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Post #52by Alexell » 08.11.2019, 06:33

Lafuente_Astronomy, I do not quite understand the purpose of this list.
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Post #53by Lafuente_Astronomy » 08.11.2019, 07:53

Alexell wrote:Lafuente_Astronomy, I do not quite understand the purpose of this list.

Well, based on what Janus said, he suggested a list that keeps records of all accounts that have been banned and removed from the server in another file, for the purposes of recording and finding out if other sites have been attacked or invaded by these same accounts
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Post #54by Alexell » 08.11.2019, 08:26

Lafuente_Astronomy, I do not have a ready-made solution to implement your idea. And there is no time for that. I suggest using all the features available in the forum engine.

To do this, I expanded the privileges for moderators. Now you can log in to Administration Control Panel (ACP) and get access to the following features:
1. Manage users, Clean inactive users, mass delete users by criteria
2. Ban email, ban ip, ban users, restrict usernames
3. Manage reports/denial reasons

I hope that this will be enough to complete many of the tasks that you described in this thread.

Added after 15 minutes 7 seconds:
The last thing left:
If you want to abandon reCaptcha in favor of text verification, then you need to come up with a few questions and answers.
Keep in mind that bots can solve a text confirmation system by parsing and sending a question to Google.
The task is to create such questions so that the answer to them cannot be easily found on Google, but at the same time, so that Celestia users know the answer to them.
I propose making questions specifically about Celestia, and not about astronomy.

Also let us know if a strict check is needed: case and punctuation. In the engine settings there is such an opportunity.
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Post #55by Lafuente_Astronomy » 08.11.2019, 10:03

Lafuente_Astronomy wrote:Alright. Honestly, I delayed doing what I planned to do but starting today, any new accounts with ABSOLUTELY ZERO MESSAGES for 30 days will be removed. Again, inactive members are safe from the purge if they have at least 1 message on the forum so any member who has messaged in this forum is safe, and if he/she wants, can continue to post messages in the Forum. If you have any objections, feel free to message me.

Alexell wrote:To do this, I expanded the privileges for moderators. Now you can log in to Administration Control Panel (ACP) and get access to the following features:
1. Manage users, Clean inactive users, mass delete users by criteria
2. Ban email, ban ip, ban users, restrict usernames
3. Manage reports/denial reasons

Well, eversince having gained the new capabilities, which I have to thank Alexell for, I can now permanently remove any accounts. The ruling still stands: Any accounts that haven't posted anything, not even a single message for 30 days will be removed. Any accounts with at least a single post or message are safe. However, to properly differentiate between actual spam accounts and probably interested members who have made accounts but are too shy to make messages, I'll remove only those accounts whose latest activity time is close to its account creation time. For example, if an account hasn't made any posts for more than 30 days, and then the account's latest activity is a few minutes after the account's creation, then it proves that the account hasn't been used since shortly after its creation, and thus, a potential lurking spammer account. Thus, it will be removed.

This is an advisory of the intent to remove spam/inactive accounts. If you have any objections, feel free to message me. Other than that, the purge of those accounts begin now
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Post #56by Alexell » 08.11.2019, 10:38

Lafuente_Astronomy, okay. Just be careful and do not remove the excess.
And one more thing: if you decide to make a text confirmation instead of reCaptcha - write questions and answers to me in PM, you do not need to write them in this thread.

Added after 2 minutes 45 seconds:
After that, this topic will be closed.
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