Support » Plugin: NextGEN Gallery Voting » [Plugin: NextGEN Gallery Voting] Bots are voting on my images

  • Hello,

    my issuse of today is because i found out that a lot of votes on my images are from bots, crawlers and spiders.

    When star-voting is active, then it is possible to block bots with the robots.txt using

    #blocks all URL with a "?"
    #(the ngg-Voting-Links contain a "?")
    Disallow: /*?

    But only the good bots do what i tell them in the robots.txt. The evil bots will ignore the robots.txt and ceep voting. And some of the good bots dont understand the Disallow: /*?

    When using drop-down voting i get less votes from bots (between 5 and 10 a day). How can i get rid of them completely?

    force_login = 1 might solve the problem with the bots but then i have the new problem that the visitors of my page cant vote either and i doubt that many will register in order to be able to vote.

Viewing 15 replies - 1 through 15 (of 21 total)
  • Plugin Author shauno


    You can try add a rel=”nofollow” to the links too. But that’s not going to stop ‘bad’ bots either.

    Anyone have any suggestions for stopping non-human clicks?

    the good old captcha might help. But it will annoy human users, too.

    One other possibility might be to ban certain IP´s from voting. Here is how it might work:

    -the Webmaster can add bot-ip´s manually in the backend and votes from that IP will not be counted any more and all old votes from that IP will be deleted.
    -the plugin checks, if this IP has allready voted in the past. If yes, it checks when and how the vote has been cast.
    Example: I have one “visitor” with the IP coming to my website every night, casting 3-5 votes with ~20 minutes between two votes and then leaving. this makes me think that this “visitor” is a bot.

    Plugin Author shauno


    You can already limit by IP by allowing 1 vote per image or gallery. If that option is not selected, the plugin must count all votes from an IP. What’s to say they aren’t legitimate votes?

    i mean those votes:
    1. One IP, coming to my site every day, at completely random times (day and night), voting once or twice and then leaving.
    id gid pid vote user_id ip proxy dateadded
    1849 0 707 20 0 2011-12-18 00:49:21
    1855 0 630 100 0 2011-12-18 03:49:55
    1865 0 624 80 0 2011-12-18 23:37:39
    1869 0 626 100 0 2011-12-19 01:34:03
    1871 0 623 80 0 2011-12-19 03:46:32
    1904 0 619 80 0 2011-12-20 18:58:08
    1908 0 628 20 0 2011-12-20 22:53:38
    1913 0 620 100 0 2011-12-21 06:16:38

    2. One Ip, voting on many pictures within ONE second.
    1719 0 625 40 0 2011-12-13 10:09:05
    1737 0 621 40 0 2011-12-13 10:09:05
    1784 0 622 40 0 2011-12-13 10:09:05
    1786 0 619 100 0 2011-12-13 10:09:05
    1803 0 702 60 0 2011-12-13 10:09:06
    1829 0 633 40 0 2011-12-13 10:09:06

    They are obviously NOT cast by humans. There must be a way of finding and deleting these votes automatically.

    i forgot to say merry x-max. and sorry for adding so many items to your to-do list.

    one other possibility is:

    i have Piwik – Web analytics running on my server. It tracks the IP´s of all my human visitors. I need a programm that compares the IP´s of the votes to the IP´s in my piwik-database…

    i finished writing this program in VBA for excel. are you interested in the code?

    Happy new year!

    Here is another suggestion on how to solve the bot-issue:
    “Trapping “Dumb Submitter Bots”” read it on:

    Plugin Author shauno


    Those are honey pots. They work with submitting forms. The star and (dis)like voting are links.

    nice to hear from you.

    I currently use the drop-down and the honey-pot would help me. would it be much work to implement this?

    Plugin Author shauno


    Done in 1.9.3. Not perfect, but should stop ‘dumb’ bots accidentally voting on your images.

    thanks for the update. I will tell you, if i get less spam-votes now.

    i still get plenty of spam votes.

    an other way to filter out spam votes might be to check if the user who is casting a vote is currently using a browser. Bots usually dont.


    I have the same problem (crawlers and bots voting on images) and would recommend to change the way voting works: change the regular http links to small HTTP forms. I suppose there are much less bots and almost no crawlers who use HTTP forms.

    You could add honeypot hidden input fields – only bots could fill in values. This behavior could be used with blocking these IPs.

    What do you think?


    Plugin Author shauno


    Honey pots with the drop down voting has been implemented as per my last post in this thread. Apparently, it didn’t help.
    Changing the other voting types to forms is a lot of work, and it seems it wouldn’t really help.

    The best way to stop spamming is force users to be logged in. But I understand that is terrible for conversions.

    Anyone have a better way of stopping bots?

Viewing 15 replies - 1 through 15 (of 21 total)
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