24 November 2006

bbAntiSpam Tools: The First Anti-Spam Solution For phpBB Forums Has Been Released

Spam on the boards has become a genuine concern for administrators of phpBB, the most popular forum engine. Boards often appear to be victims for spammers by not only using bulletin boards as place for commercial activities and smart attempts to attract people’s attention, but also by initiating process of gradual reduction of current members’ interest in both visiting and taking part in communication in spammed forums. It wouldn’t be such a harmful problem for administrators if there wasn’t tremendous loss of potential members, who instantly feel that poor attention is being paid from administrators in order to prevent online boards from abundance of spam.

Of course, the developers of phpBB have provided the ability to reduce probable flow of spam abuse by several ways: restriction to post any messages for unregistered users and so-called CAPTCHA – a type of challenge-response test used to determine whether human or bot tries to get registered as a new member to receive the ability to create threads, post messages or comments on forums. At the first glance, these arrangements seem to be enough in order to keep boards clean from unwanted spam. But even basic spambots have already got the ability to recognize code, which is essential for the completion of the registration process, in generated images. Some administrators try to use more advanced types of CAPTCHA that generate sophisticated images with fairly simple code in it but, as very often happens, humans themselves encounter the difficulty to recognize characters in the images generated by these advanced visual confirmation tests.

In order to stop spam activity, some administrators make attempts to use manual activation method of newly registered users and then stop doing this after short period of time, because it is extremely inefficient routine often leading to unexpected waste of time. Taking in the account that administrators are not robots, this routine eventually turns out a loss in the activity of board during administrator’s absence, whose duty is to perform manual activation of new registrations.

Moreover, it is not a secret that spam activity in bulletin boards is mainly performed during weekends, when administrators usually have a rest, and it very often occurs that quantities of users, waiting for administrator to have their accounts activated, reach such levels that administrators decide to switch off manual activation solely because they are not able to handle all that manual sorting. There is also an e-mail activation of new users which doesn’t work for spambots anymore – bots automatically confirm such activations with great success.

It is necessary to mention that many board administrators are possessors of the opinion that having inability to post messages for unregistered users is, at some magnitude, useful to protect boards from spam, meanwhile understanding that such a restriction significantly reduces the activity in online boards because people generally don’t like registration process and, therefore, will immediately change their mind to post a message as soon as they see the necessity of being registered. As the result, most users end up by leaving boards without going through any registration. There must be a consensus finally! And actually there is:

Recently developed in Russia, Saint-Petersburg by Oleg Parashchenko, “bbAntiSpam Tools” is a new era anti-spam solution and a powerful remedy for the owners of phpBB boards. bbAntiSpam solution helps to keep bulletin boards effectively protected from both messages and registrations created by spammers, doing this with much more higher success rates than original anti-bot solutions of phpBB do, and, at the same time, provides with extra advantages which were only dreams of the most board administrators previously: unregistered users still have the ability to communicate and increased spambot filtering during registration process. According to the responses from users of the solution, bbAntiSpam solves the problem of spam on boards exceptionally well. “Nice MOD. Great Job.”, said a member of phpBB’s creators’ home board.

About bbAntiSpam Tools

The solution consists of two tools: “Links Rejector” and “Textual Confirmation”.

"Links Rejector", as a part of bbAntiSpam Tools, is designed to restrict using of any links in the posts of unregistered users. Very simple and simultaneously is very effective method of preventing spammers from doing what they want. “Links Rejector” is extremely easy to implement into already installed phpBB and installation itself takes less than 1 minute or just few clicks with EasyMOD. Available for free download here: http://bbantispam.com/lr/LinksRejector.zip.

“Textual Confirmation” is an amazingly effective substitution of visual confirmation. Bots, instead of trying to determine characters in the image, must know the answers to actual human questions to complete registration. If the answer is wrong, the registration is rejected and notification to administrator is sent. Questions and answers can be modified so that administrators could create new or make questions in the list community oriented. “Textual Confirmation” also easily implements into already installed phpBB and the installation process will take less than 3 minutes or is done by just few clicks with EasyMOD. Available for free download here: http://bbantispam.com/tc/TextualConfirmation.zip.

Each tool of bbAntiSpam solution comes in two editions: Community and Business.

Community edition has to do with a community-collected ban list, which collects aggregate statistics on spam texts and spammers' IPs, providing for all the owners of the solution with opportunity of automatic blocking any registration attempts and message postings by bots that were notoriously recognized in the past by other owners of phpBB with installed bbAntiSpam Tools. Whenever spam registration is rejected, Links Rejector and Textual Confirmation send notifications to the forum administrator and to the community spam database.

Coming Christmas and New Year Eve holidays are the period of very intense activity of spambots in forums. Therefore, it is extremely important for administrators to be prepared for spam attacks in time and to have bbAntiSpam Tools installed before these holidays. Now every owner of phpBB has possibility to use Community edition of any part of the solution for FREE and benefit the community at once! If one doesn’t want any notifications to be sent, then he or she can buy business license for just $29.95. In addition to the purchase of each tool, every buyer receives bonus – license code is reciprocally valid for both Textual Confirmation and Link Rejector!

For more information, please visit http://bbantispam.com/.


Contact person: Oleg Parashchenko

E-mail: olpa@uucode.com

Home page: http://bbantispam.com/

“Links Rejector” info and screenshots: http://bbantispam.com/lr/

“Textual Confirmation” info and screenshots: http://bbantispam.com/tc/

Download link: http://bbantispam.com/lr/LinksRejector.zip

Download link: http://bbantispam.com/tc/TextualConfirmation.zip

Forum: http://bbantispam.com/forum/

phpBB Antispam HOWTO: http://bbantispam.com/howto/

24 November 2006