Dodgy accounts spamming the forums with advertising material


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Chris Lambertz wrote:
We are brainstorming over here on ways we can get the spam at bay. Currently it's been pushed back by some higher priority projects, but we appreciate all the ideas being brought up. Hopefully we can implement something soon. In the meantime, thank you for helping us isolate these accounts :)

Make it so a new account can only respond to threads not post new ones until they reach a certain time period or post count?

Or during this possible "probation period". Be it a week a day whatever - they can only post x number of threads meaning the spamming is detected by content but it isn't a flood?


Target in the open. Fire for effect


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RDM42 wrote:
Chris Lambertz wrote:
We are brainstorming over here on ways we can get the spam at bay. Currently it's been pushed back by some higher priority projects, but we appreciate all the ideas being brought up. Hopefully we can implement something soon. In the meantime, thank you for helping us isolate these accounts :)
Make it so a new account can only respond to threads not post new ones until they reach a certain time period or post count?

5 minutes later random threads will be getting filled with spam. Not a great solution, sorry.


And another.

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

They spawn faster than I can flag them. Definately a bot.

Also, they are slowing down the Games Forum.

I just noticed, the spam is mostly in the Games Forum.
I wonder if the bot is targeting forum names that have "Forum" in them.
If that is the case, could a change of name solve the proplem?


If so, a seperate forum named "Decoy" would solve such a problem.
But as i'm thinking...unlikely.


Chyrone wrote:

If so, a seperate forum named "Decoy" would solve such a problem.

But as i'm thinking...unlikely.

I had a similar idea posted somewhere here.


Since these spammers have started up I've found loading on the entire messageboard to be pretty hit and miss, with slow loading times and failed loads being the norm. As a general rule when I retry afterwards I find that a massive spam dump just hit. Is anyone else encountering this issue?


Not yet...and hoping i won't have to :/


*Sigh* Another one. This is getting old for me, I'd hate to imagine what it's like for the mods.


yup, another wave of spam and another set of slow loads. I don't like spam


Can't Paizo just freeze their accounts for an 30 minutes after every post they make.


2 and a half pages in Forum Games are now claimed :(

Silver Crusade Assistant Software Developer

5 accounts, nearly 300 spams.

Thanks for all of your help guys.


A new Baba Ji alias


You can't stop me! Mwahahahahahahaha

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32

Mikaze wrote:

Also, found this while searching on a lark.

No posts, no reviews, just a profile page filled with the same spam.

This profile is still there.


More Baba Ji.


He's ba-ack. 30 posts in 10 minutes so far....

EDIT: 61 posts in 20 minutes.

EDIT again: 90 posts in 30 minutes.

EDIT again: 104 in 40 minutes. He's slowed down. :P


Oh, miserable Guruji deserves fierce smackings and whackings on his poor spammy head.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber

What they said.


Captain, I'm givin' 'er all she's got!

We do need a better system, Guruji is spitting one of these out every 15 seconds tonight...


I suppose I can't complain about a system that let non humans in...


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Aaaaagggghhhhhh!!!! Charlie Brown shriek

I HATE this spammer!

General Discussion is now flooded.

Explains why I was having trouble getting on-site.

I'm starting to wonder if this isn't a deliberate DOS attack.

And...can we get a drop-down that says Die, spammer, DIE!!!!!


Up to 92 just a moment ago.

EDIT 104


Why don't we all just sign this jerk up for some REALLY bad spam, since he's nice enough to give us his contact data.
What, I think it's fair, it's not too evil is it?


I feel like we need a phantom/zombie/clone peddler stat block to commemorate Babaji when we finally defeat this most terrible foe.

Silver Crusade

Albatoonoe wrote:
I feel like we need a phantom/zombie/clone peddler stat block to commemorate Babaji when we finally defeat this most terrible foe.

1000 pugwampis banging away at keyboards...

Silver Crusade Assistant Software Developer

Albatoonoe wrote:
I feel like we need a phantom/zombie/clone peddler stat block to commemorate Babaji when we finally defeat this most terrible foe.

All the hate...

Silver Crusade

"This town needs an enema!"

*party blower*


... And again. This is getting ridiculous.

Silver Crusade

"Where we're going, we won't need eyes to see..."


WTH man?


Is it time to lock ability to make posts for new accounts until some period of time passes or moderate manual unlocks that ability? I hoped that we don't reach that point but it is getting ridiculous... :/


I'm on my Kindle so linking's a pain, but babaaghori.


babaaghori

He's slower than the others.


New one. Thar she blows!


Just to go out on a limb and try to be constructive, I know that you're limited by the account management software you're using, but is there some kind of "trial user" setting you can use?
- Trial users may make only one post per 30 minutes (adjustable based on complaints from REAL trial users)
- Trial users become real users after 30 days.

I don't know. They could still work past that, but it would at least take effort, and this seems more like someone who's just messing with Paizo because it's easy.

Or we take the "spamming this board isn't worth it" approach and get 50-60 dedicated Paizo users who will open communications via e-mail/phone and just waste oodles of the spammers' time. My favorite-ever phone solicitation was some poor guy who had to read me a 2-minute prepared speech. So I said, "What?" and he was required to repeat it. I said, "What?" again and he hung up on me and never called back.

If we have the time, wasting other peoples' time can be useful.

Scarab Sages

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Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
NobodysHome wrote:

Just to go out on a limb and try to be constructive, I know that you're limited by the account management software you're using, but is there some kind of "trial user" setting you can use?

- Trial users may make only one post per 30 minutes (adjustable based on complaints from REAL trial users)
- Trial users become real users after 30 days.

An alternative could be those trial users can't start a new thread for 30 days. I don't know if their bot allows them to post to existing threads.


Charles Scholz wrote:
NobodysHome wrote:

Just to go out on a limb and try to be constructive, I know that you're limited by the account management software you're using, but is there some kind of "trial user" setting you can use?

- Trial users may make only one post per 30 minutes (adjustable based on complaints from REAL trial users)
- Trial users become real users after 30 days.

An alternative could be those trial users can't start a new thread for 30 days. I don't know if their bot allows them to post to existing threads.

Really quite the awesome idea. Thanks, Charles!


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It would probably be most effective to just put a time cap on how often a new account can post. You don't want to punish a new player who's just joined the forum to ask a question, who finds out that they aren't eligible to make even one thread.


While this particular spammer hasn't, others have posted in existing threads rather than starting their own.


Frankly, I like the trial account idea.


I say it again. Make everyone able to remove any post with the specific phone number in it. Easier to change the phone number when it changes than to remove every post for the mods.


Is this the reason the server goblins have been showing up more often?


And another.


Man, look at that response time!

We love you guys!

Silver Crusade Assistant Software Developer

Andrea1 wrote:
Is this the reason the server goblins have been showing up more often?

I don't believe it is, but I've not investigated it fully. We had some reboots and that mucked some stuff up as well as a small bit of hardware failure. There's been some process changes and basically a lot is going on under the hood that has changed and that may mean some adjustment further down the line. But now that I've got a handle on some other problems I'm going to be looking into that problem a little later today. Basically, the servers are getting overloaded occasionally, and I believe a lot of that is from restarts where we pull in a lot of data right up front. It may mean we have to change the way we are doing that or figure a better way to deal with it or maybe even expand hardware.

But dealing with spammers is also priority and we'll see how that interacts. It could be that there is an excess of traffic being generated from spammers checking our site or something. We are however aware and trying to work though it.


Lissa Guillet wrote:


But dealing with spammers is also priority and we'll see how that interacts. It could be that there is an excess of traffic being generated from spammers checking our site or something. We are however aware and trying to work though it.

How do the IP request patterns look? Are you getting unusual waves of hits from Ruritania?

Sorry, let me rephrase that. You may find it useful to look at see if these outages are related to waves of hits from some unusual spot. Obviously it's way out of line for me to ask to see your IP logs, but I don't think it's inappropriate to suggest a possible line of investigation.


NobodysHome wrote:

Just to go out on a limb and try to be constructive, I know that you're limited by the account management software you're using, but is there some kind of "trial user" setting you can use?

- Trial users may make only one post per 30 minutes (adjustable based on complaints from REAL trial users)
- Trial users become real users after 30 days.

I don't know. They could still work past that, but it would at least take effort, and this seems more like someone who's just messing with Paizo because it's easy.

Or we take the "spamming this board isn't worth it" approach and get 50-60 dedicated Paizo users who will open communications via e-mail/phone and just waste oodles of the spammers' time. My favorite-ever phone solicitation was some poor guy who had to read me a 2-minute prepared speech. So I said, "What?" and he was required to repeat it. I said, "What?" again and he hung up on me and never called back.

If we have the time, wasting other peoples' time can be useful.

One small problem could be spammers making accounts on a regular basis, and allowing them to sit for a month to run the time out. Perhaps make it based on number of posts instead of a time limit. If an account makes enough posts without being flagged for spam, they could break out of the trial.

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