Recent spam, forum problems and some background information Topic is solved

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nnnik
Posts: 4037
Joined: 30 Sep 2013, 01:01
Location: Germany

Recent spam, forum problems and some background information

07 Feb 2019, 06:22

Hello everyone
as you might have noticed we have been dealing with some problems in the forums lately.
I think it's time someone explained what is going on.

Recently a discussion in the Other languages Forums ended badly with a person actually trolling members of this forums.
See: https://www.autohotkey.com/boards/viewtopic.php?f=23&t=61286 https://www.autohotkey.com/boards/viewtopic.php?f=23&t=61602
After we banned them they apparently got salty and now try to attack this forum in any way they can find.
In order to prevent this from happening tank set up new protection rules to keep these forums safe.

Here are the answers to any questions you might have:
I keep receiving mails that the forum has been hacked and that I need to change my passwords.
If this were to happen we would sent out an official mail and you would see notes on the main site and receive a full post with instructions and a full discussion about this.
We wouldn't supress information regarding that sort of happening. We have nothing to gain from this. The forums are reasonably secure and I don't feel unsafe here.
However nothing is perfect and as we are just individuals that spend their free time to maintain this forum even more so.
I'm getting some sort of "you have no rights to access this forum" message - am I banned?
No you are not - we are currently aggressively blocking traffic from users in order to prevent misuse from this bad user.
If you actually do end up getting banned on this forums and don't think that this ban was meant for you you can contact us through the other channels of the community - e.g. e-Mail, IRC or Discord.
I can't post the following words/code etc..
This is a problem in the current rules that needs to be worked on.
If you stumble upon something like this just let us know. You can share the code that doesn't work by using pastebin or Git gists or similar.

If you have any questions feel free to leave them here.
Sorry for the inconvenience and I hope you have a nice day :)
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SL5
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Re: Recent spam, forum problems and some background information

07 Feb 2019, 07:13

feature requests:

prohibits sending from links for poople with 0 messiages and guests maybe
or so.

or parse out for such peaole the http . or replace the http with a picture of it.
swagfag
Posts: 2237
Joined: 11 Jan 2017, 17:59

Re: Recent spam, forum problems and some background information

07 Feb 2019, 07:28

ahahhah oh wow, were the vulvas really User's doing?? lol. history repeats itself

that said, i dont think his antics are ban worthy

then again, im not a mod, so........
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nnnik
Posts: 4037
Joined: 30 Sep 2013, 01:01
Location: Germany

Re: Recent spam, forum problems and some background information

07 Feb 2019, 09:14

Well he has been banned like 5 to 10 times now. And we will ban him again.
He has actively tried to make people agressive and thats just going beyond the line.
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SOTE
Posts: 546
Joined: 15 Jun 2015, 06:21

Re: Recent spam, forum problems and some background information

07 Feb 2019, 22:34

swagfag wrote:
07 Feb 2019, 07:28
ahahhah oh wow, were the vulvas really User's doing?? lol. history repeats itself

that said, i dont think his antics are ban worthy

then again, im not a mod, so........
Wow, didn't know it went that deep. Looks to be a mentally unstable troll. I don't think a moderator can allow such antics, to include the person trying to spam and tamper with the forum.
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jeeswg
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Location: UK

Re: Recent spam, forum problems and some background information

12 Feb 2019, 19:17

- I've had some great interactions with User in the past.
- He has a good heart and I'd be happy to help act as a go-between to reduce tensions/restore peace.
- Here's a nice message he sent me recently.
How to get window client area pos? (x y width height) - AutoHotkey Community
https://autohotkey.com/boards/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=60924
- Based on those 2 threads he shouldn't have been banned.
- He did deserve a talking-to by the mods, but there was nothing serious there.
- Was he banned unwisely and unfairly?
- And is language like this wise? 'they apparently got salty'.
- Because with a more measured response from the mods/admins we would have avoided the mass spamming and shutdown/slowdown of this website.
- @nnnik: To try and understand the situation, let's imagine that you were banned, or that you had your administrator privileges taken away, would you be 'salty' as you say? Wouldn't it be wiser to persuade User to make peace, and not insult him unnecessarily, like any good administrator/moderator would?

- Btw, some people, perhaps without realising, were winding him up in threads like this:
Is there any good alternative for script Pre-Edition for AHK? - AutoHotkey Community
https://autohotkey.com/boards/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=60468
Is there any way to create a function dynamically? - AutoHotkey Community
https://autohotkey.com/boards/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=60513
[Function] - O() - Simple Object Function! - AutoHotkey Community
https://autohotkey.com/boards/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=55966
- When somebody is already irritated by missing features in AHK, and when somebody makes the effort to work on code to solve these problems, and then people just mock you. When this happens multiple times, it's understandable that people get tetchy.
- These types of proactive users, sometimes shaky, sometimes on the money, are often the best types of users to have on a forum.
- If you insult people, expect them to get defensive, maybe too defensive.
- I'd noticed him getting tetchy in the past month or so.
- So in general, I'd suggest to go easy on people sometimes.

- @User: Whether or not you should have been banned, I would recommend you to be as peaceable and polite as possible. The better you make your case, the easier it will be to advocate for your return to the forum. I hope you read this, sending my support. Cheers.
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gregster
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Re: Recent spam, forum problems and some background information

12 Feb 2019, 20:04

I think after such a spam fest, there can be no way back for this account. It sends the wrong signals - no matter what lead to a ban. Such behaviour is simply not acceptable and you have to send a clear message. Without this whole spamapalooza, I agree, there perhaps might have been a way back (although his attitude was going on for years). But the attacks on the forum speak for themselves.

Of course, there are sometimes users who are able to shake off their bad habits and who come back after some time with a fresh account and don't get recognized for years... or ever. Good for them... but if you see the disruption he caused and still causes, I don't see any future here for this user account or the specific online persona behind it.
Helgef
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Re: Recent spam, forum problems and some background information

13 Feb 2019, 00:22

User has been on the forum with several accounts in the past, always ending up with a ban and followed up by a spam attack. The worst I know of lasting for several weeks with explicit content and death threats.
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SL5
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Re: Recent spam, forum problems and some background information

13 Feb 2019, 23:18

Helgef wrote:
13 Feb 2019, 00:22
User has been on the forum with several accounts in the past, always ending up with a ban and followed up by a spam attack. The worst I know of lasting for several weeks with explicit content and death threats.
In my sense of justice, there is no never to somebody for someday give him a second chance.
Is it technically easily possible to block sombody for about 5 months or a year?
(BTW otherwise I can not remember knowing anything specific about the user. Maybe my opinion is not special importand. i dont konw.)

sorry i not yet answerd all this questions: https://www.autohotkey.com/boards/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=61850&p=263512#p263319
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nnnik
Posts: 4037
Joined: 30 Sep 2013, 01:01
Location: Germany

Re: Recent spam, forum problems and some background information  Topic is solved

14 Feb 2019, 05:40

No he will be banned permanently. He has inconvenienced our users and made us change the forum software - blocking out legitimate users for weeks.
He spent weeks trying to DDOS and destroy this forum. He has attacked several of our forum members directly on a personal basis.
He spent a lot of time attacking other parts of our community as well. I we find out where he lives we will pursue legal action to get him into prison.
Hopefully hed never gets out. There is no 10th chance for this person. The attacks never stopped and he is just a troll.
You should apologize to the people that actually suffered from this situation.
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liquidthex
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Joined: 15 Feb 2019, 10:34

Re: Recent spam, forum problems and some background information

15 Feb 2019, 10:37

How did he acquire a list of member's email addresses?
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nnnik
Posts: 4037
Joined: 30 Sep 2013, 01:01
Location: Germany

Re: Recent spam, forum problems and some background information

15 Feb 2019, 11:07

He didnt get a list of the members e-Mail addresses as far as Im aware - that would be new.
He did however abuse a technique in the phpBB boards.
Every user that is quoted in a topic will get an e-Mail notification if so desired.
That caused the spam w-Mail wise using the forums.
He never e-Mailed anybody directly as far as Im aware.
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Guest

Re: Recent spam, forum problems and some background information

17 Feb 2019, 11:12

Are you sure user is the spammer? Are you sure he is the one to blame?
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nnnik
Posts: 4037
Joined: 30 Sep 2013, 01:01
Location: Germany

Re: Recent spam, forum problems and some background information

18 Feb 2019, 05:34

Yes we are - he has used similar methods before and has shown similar behavior before.
Also the attacks started from an ip the ip that he uses immediately after he has been banned.
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malcev
Posts: 159
Joined: 12 Aug 2014, 12:37

Re: Recent spam, forum problems and some background information

18 Feb 2019, 12:58

I offer to forbid post images to forum by new users, till they will got for example 100 posts.
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JoeWinograd
Posts: 1155
Joined: 10 Feb 2014, 20:00

Re: Recent spam, forum problems and some background information

19 Feb 2019, 19:00

Every user that is quoted in a topic will get an e-Mail notification if so desired.
That caused the spam w-Mail wise using the forums.
He never e-Mailed anybody directly as far as Im aware.
That is why I'll go back to the suggestion that I made in the other recent thread on this topic, namely, kill the "quoted you" feature, at least until we find a better way to stop this bad actor. When I suggested that last time, the reply was:

> Changing our existing defenses against spammers to handle this kid is easier than shutting down those features.

But, apparently, that's not the case, as "this kid" keeps coming back, but the only exploit that I see is the "quoted you" feature. As I mentioned earlier, the "quoted you" aspect is not really that important. It's fine to simply quote the text (without user-attribution, as I did above) or, if it's too difficult to kill the user-attribution quote while keeping the non-user-attribution quote, then kill both, and we can do quotes with the greater-than sign, a standard method in many forums/groups (and email) and/or bold and/or italics (as I did above). But we need to shut this down. Thanks, Joe
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gregster
Posts: 2135
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Re: Recent spam, forum problems and some background information

19 Feb 2019, 19:06

At the moment the spammer always creates a post with some innocent content (mostly a simple question or sentence) and then edits this post and replaces the original post with his usual bs... I guess that is the way to get around certain new user restrictions...

Disabling the quoting feature won't fix the picture spam what I see as the more urgent problem (but of course, the quoting generates more attention).

A problem seems also reaction time... sometimes 20 minutes or more (today and yesterday, at least - updated: now it is already 35 minutes and 13 spam posts), even after reporting several posts, indicate that there are not enough people (with the needed rights) around at certain times of the day or night (here, it's night).
Last edited by gregster on 19 Feb 2019, 19:22, edited 1 time in total.
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JoeWinograd
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Re: Recent spam, forum problems and some background information

19 Feb 2019, 19:22

Hi gregster,

> Disabling the quoting feature won't fix the picture spam what I see as the more urgent problem

We disagree on that. I can easily ignore the one-off posts. It's the email barrage that makes it difficult to find the folks who really need help. Since it's the quoted-you feature that allows him to generate a large number of emails, shutting down that feature would stop a big portion, if not all, of the email problem. Regards, Joe
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gregster
Posts: 2135
Joined: 30 Sep 2013, 06:48

Re: Recent spam, forum problems and some background information

19 Feb 2019, 19:24

It seems my settings prevent that I get e-mails when I get quoted - I see it only in the forum notifications.

Also, the forum has some responsibilty for its hosted content - this forum is accessible to people of all ages. And somewhere in the world it is always afternoon.

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