WordPress.org

Ready to get started?Download WordPress

Forums

Bizarre Spam Attack Going On. (8 posts)

  1. Leonnears
    Member
    Posted 1 year ago #

    Today it is being a weird day on my site. I'm receiving too many spam comments, but they are quite different than what you would expect. They seem to attempt to look like legit people by posting things that have common words words with a certain post. But what they post makes no sense, and even weirder, they have no links to other websites or products. The good thing is I have to approve the comments before they get accepted because otherwise it would be hell.

    ALL these comments are coming from Facebook accounts. And like I said, they make absolutely no sense in relation to what my content is about, but they try to. What is even weirder is that these comments seem to come from legit Facebook accounts. Could it be possible some spambot got their credentials and is spamming random sites with Facebook-enabled sites?

    Let me give you an example...

    This post is a tutorial to create Notification Center Widgets for iOS. One of the spam comments I received is this:

    Evi,If you are referring what looks like a seocnd bar a pixel or two above and to the left of your progress bars, I beleive this is because you are using a dark backround. I had the same issue with my background. It looks right on a blog with a white bacground, as it is meant to be a drop shadow. I had to edit the .css to eliminate the drop shadow.I’ll email you the .css I’m using. You can simply replace the existing one with the one I send you and see if that is better. You can also monkey with the colors to get them to match your blog better.

    If you read the actual blog post, you'll see it has nothing to do with CSS, background colors, or anything in those lines. Hell the blog post has nothing to do with web development at all. No one called "Evi" commented, and the name "Evi" doesn't pop up anywhere at all in the blog post itself. The comment came from some guy called Jorge Chavira. In this specific case, this account could be a bot considering there's only one on his list.

    Another example is this:

    This post is a tutorial to create mobile substrate tweaks for iOS. I received the following comment:

    OK, I did this and it worked (despite swpieng out an error when I activated the plugin). How do I limit it to specific pages? I don’t need them all refreshing every minute. Can I create “header-slug” pages, or does that only work for page-slug and post-slug? May 21 ’11 at 11:44

    (Yes, this comment came in with that date written at the end and everything).

    This comment is completely out of place. I never talk about header-slugs, I don't know what header slugs are, I don't mention the word "pages" in such a way that they would need to be "refreshed", so that comment is completely out of place.

    This comment came from an account that looks more "legit", regardless of the ridiculous teenager "cOoL nAmE". This account has a visible timeline and there's some content. Moniikiita

    As a final example (the one that left me dumbfounded the most), is this one:

    A while ago I published my second app on iOS App Store and decided to do a small giveaway to promote it. As such, I created this post to draw the attention of people to it. This was done at least a few weeks ago, and I received the following comment:

    Curious about how this works. I hope I’m missing sohmietng obvious, but I can’t find an intuitive way of moving between years (no swipe). Tapping on a day brings up a schedule for that day: great. But there’s no apparent way to highlight/enter spans for large blocks of time (as per the preview image) events marked out as multi-week all day events in my main calendar aren’t flagged up in any special way. Doesn’t seem to have any data entry facility. And some of the UI is a little buggy (try hitting the calendar button more than a few times) Again, I’m hoping I’m just being dense/blind/missing sohmietng obvious, but on first play, it doesn’t really seem to offer all that much.Not to hijack the thread, but Timeli app works pretty well for planning blocks of time. What draws me to 12 months is the idea of integration with the native calendar. Timeli looks great and functions well, but I rarely fire it up simply because it’s an additional body of data to manage

    I was about to take some feedback seriously, but then it turns out this comment wasn't about my app at all. The spam comment (coming from the Facebook account Emy Hoshiko), mentions the App "Timeli", which is not even a "competitor" to my app. This app "she" is talking about is a time management app with a calendar and all those fancy time-management tools. My app doesn't even have a calendar. So this comment is completely out of place as well.

    Another weird thing is that all those comments have particular typos, as if they did it on purpose.

    I'm sorry for linking directly to the "offending" Facebook accounts. I figure if I want to get much information and possibly nail down this problem altogether, I need to give as many details as possible. Normally I wouldn't mind comments out of place and I would just mark them as spam, but ALL of those misplaced comments came in TODAY, not even in a timeframe defined by days. ALL of them come from Facebook accounts, and all of them just seem a little bit... Off.

    If anyone knows what could be happening, I will appreciate. So far I haven't received so many misplaced comments but all of the ones I have received came in today, so it has definitely raised some eyebrows and I would like to stop this before it turns any worse.

    PS: My WordPress site is not hosted on WordPress.com. I'm hosting it on Bluepress, but I thought you guys may know something about this.

  2. s_ha_dum
    Member
    Posted 1 year ago #

    It isn't that weird. Fake content like that can get past some automatic filters and maybe some humans who aren't paying attention.

    Sending from FaceBook is interesting, or spoofing such. FaceBook might respond if you report the sites. It can't be good for them if this catches on.

    Otherwise, run a filtering plugin like Akismet.

    As for the misspellings, I recently read (can't find it) a report claiming that this is one of several things done on purpose in order to filter out the smart people. Those left, and thus those that respond, are the less intelligent and are consequently more vulnerable.

  3. Leonnears
    Member
    Posted 1 year ago #

    Heya,

    Thanks for your reply. Since I posted this I received three more bizarre contents. I can't however, for the life of me, figure out WHY are they spamming. There's no links in their posts, they just look retarded, so why exactly would this be benefiting for those sending out these bots? Could they just be testing the anti-spam measures on my site to do something worse if they succeed? This is what baffles me the most. It looks like senseless spam with no real benefit.

    Thanks for mentioning Akismet by the way haha. I'm kind of a WordPress noob, so I need some useful plugins. I will check it out.

    And for the misspelling that looks interesting. I will look for the article, but if you find it first, I will really appreciate it if you share!

    Lastly, who on Facebook should I contact for this? I think I should report the offending profiles, but at the same time, I think it will be good to figure out what they are up to...

  4. s_ha_dum
    Member
    Posted 1 year ago #

    I can't however, for the life of me, figure out WHY are they spamming. There's no links in their posts, they just look retarded, so why exactly would this be benefiting for those sending out these bots?

    Sometimes I wonder that too. Some sites link back to the originating site automatically, so they may be hoping for that. They may be building a kind of database. If the periodically search for the specific weird phrasing in their emails they could build a database of spam-able sites which then get spammed when someone pays for it. It could be a broken or an experimental spam engine.

    Spam engines/spam networks do have identifiable characteristics. With enough effort you could probably track down which this is, if it common enough.

    Lastly, who on Facebook should I contact for this?

    No idea, but they must be contactable is some way. I have no faith in FaceBook doing the right thing, but they may do the avoid-legal-problems thing.

  5. Gabe Young
    Member
    Posted 1 year ago #

    You should already have Akismet, you just need to activate it.

    BTW, after a few weeks, everyone gets comment spam. Not only is is common, but it will also get worse. Eventually, you may need additional spam plugins like Cookies for Comments or Bad Behavior to supplement Akismet.

  6. Leonnears
    Member
    Posted 1 year ago #

    Yep, this is not really the first time I have received spam. What baffles me is the type of spam it is. I have received spam that links to "e-mail lists" and the like, but those were pretty common and at least it looked like it would benefit the spammer if I approved those comments.

    I guess all I'm saying is that I find it weird that I would get spam of the type I described in the OP haha.

  7. s_ha_dum
    Member
    Posted 1 year ago #

    I know what you mean. I do. I wonder about some of the stuff spammers try to post. I gave you my best guesses but I have never really had the time to try to find a solid answer for some of these patterns.

  8. Gabe Young
    Member
    Posted 1 year ago #

    IMO, all comment spam is "weird". It's either vague, off-topic, has bad grammar, or all the above.

Topic Closed

This topic has been closed to new replies.

About this Topic

Tags

No tags yet.