5

Since the forum becomes more and more popular - it attracts more and more automated spam posters.

Is there some heuristic SE can implement to weed them out automatically? They seem to be following a pattern of random words and link seeds.

Or at least require minimum rep to post clickable links...

  • Also understand that the spammers themselves are reading this post for clues on how to bypass stackoverflow's spam management practices. So the first rule of fight club applies. – Eric Leschinski Jan 31 '16 at 0:56
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    @EricLeschinski I don't think SE need to publish their anti-spam algorithms here, they just need to implement some – littleadv Jan 31 '16 at 1:42
4

I'd imagine that if SE, with all its programmer people, could implement such an anti-spam scheme, they would.

But your rep for links is interesting. Even 100 would work. Any SE member from other boards would get 100 rep just for joining Money.SE, and see no issue. Only those brand new to SE would have this, a minor nuisance, but a great thorn in the spammer side. We'll look into this.

Just spent some time at the Teacher's Lounge - Their experience is that changing link ability doesn't affect spam as well as we'd imagine, the post just appear as text, i.e. the spammer isn't discouraged enough, and still posts.

There is, however, a bot for early spam detection, and they requested it be activated on Money.SE. It will create alerts at http://chat.stackexchange.com/rooms/35068/smoke-detector which I just opened.

That room is now live. In theory, it will bring these to our attention faster for deletion.

Update - the filter is in place, we are alerted via the room, but the deletion is still manual.

  • Spammers put links for robots to follow, if the links are not real links the efficiency of the spam is greatly diminished. These are not advertisements for humans, these are SEO spam link seeds. So if we hit them where it hurts - it will affect them. However, if we're already in some pool of sites where they just direct their robots to it may indeed not be very effective since they won't really care.... – littleadv Jan 31 '16 at 1:44
  • I looked at the chat room that you linked and, whoa!, it looks worse than actually getting the spam! Is that really useful to you? How? I agree that spam was probably increasing and slightly annoying, but it seems like it's flagged and gone in almost no time... – user32479 Feb 18 '16 at 3:00
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    @Brick - flagged and gone is great, but the room gives me the posts to go to and destroy the user accounts. The effort if probably 10 seconds per, and at least they are forced to go thru the effort of creating a new account. More helpful, would be that users with under X rep could not post any link whatsoever. – JoeTaxpayer Feb 18 '16 at 3:25
  • Oh, I missed the part about you killing the accounts themselves. I like that! – user32479 Feb 18 '16 at 3:29
  • @Brick - yes, one of the powers we mods wield. The ability to destroy evil, and make the world a better place. – JoeTaxpayer Feb 18 '16 at 18:35

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