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Fighting Spam!
Rating: 4.7/13
27 October 2020

This update addresses a quite widespread problem that causes considerable inconvenience to administrators and moderators. As you can see in the title, the update includes new anti-spam tools, as well as the tools to prevent spam. You will also find some information on effectiveness of anti-spam measures in general. Unfortunately, as a rule any protection measures have only a temporary effect, and spammers quickly adjust to the new conditions, use various workarounds and new tactics. All this resembles an actual war - an informational war where one side (site and e-mail owners) has to hold the defense, and the other side (spammers) looks for loopholes and attempts to attack unprotected websites. It's too early to talk about complete destroying of the enemy, but I would like to tell about individual episodes that help us approach our common victory.

Anti-spam Filter For Comments

As you can see there are tons of spam posts in comments. If we didn't filter them, in a month we would have 25 million of unnecessary posts on our site, and in a year the number would approach 300 million. The spam filtering system works according to a fairly simple principle. Each posted entry goes through a large number of simple rules - and the posts that do not match any of them are recognized as normal and are not blocked. Triggering of a rule depends on whether the checked post has certain features. For example, words from the list of banned words or certain links. Rules are constantly being added and improved, learning from examples of the added spam posts. This system allows to effectively, and most importantly quickly, check large volumes of entries. Surely no system is perfect, if your comment was mistakenly deleted the best solution in this situation would be to contact our support and to request restoration of the deleted comments. Analysis of mistakenly deleted comments and entries helps educate the filtration system and reduce the number of similar situations in future. The above-described mechanism of the filtration system works post factum.

Instant Spam Filtering

This is a completely new mechanism of spam filtering that has already been launched. The operation principle of this system is built on instant ("on the fly") analyzing of posted messages and making a decision whether it is spam or not. The system is closely connected to the mechanism of pre-moderation and therefore the risk to lose normal comments by mistake is really low, as they are simply sent for pre-moderation. The site owner can mark a normal comment as "not spam", and thereby train the system and prevent similar situations.

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