VKitty: 48% Game, 52% Spam Fighter, 100% Awesome

VKitty now has 15 honey pots, a bot trap, a donated MX record, and a fake email generator.

If you want to help Project Honey Pot too, click on the image below and sign up. The fastest way to start is by using a quicklink. Anywhere that you can put a link, you can use a quicklink. Simply put your link in a forum signature, blog sidebar, or other location (hidden using one or more of the methods given when you get your quicklink) and when spammers attack it, they’ll be tracked.

Project Honey Pot

The bot trap is very simple in design. When someone goes to http://vkitty.net/trapeze/, they will be blocked from the site until they solve a simple puzzle like this one. In addition, I get an email telling me a bunch of information about the person who got blocked.

Here’s an example of an email I got when I triggered my own trap:

A bad robot hit /trapeze/ 2009-06-06 (Sat) 21:21:52 address is ***********, hostname is
mke-***********.milwpc.com, agent is Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.1; en-US;
rv:1.9.2a1pre)  Gecko/20090606 Minefield/3.6a1pre (VKitty/6.0)

VKitty also has a random email generator at http://vkitty.net/eeeemail that generates email addresses from a list of known spammer domains. Don’t worry, you won’t be banned by visiting this one.

And now, the other 48%

STATUS UPDATE TIME! Here are a few of the projects the VKitty staff are working on:

The Royal Cat Hotel
Done. It will be released on June 17th to give us a little more time to find bugs.

100%
 

Fishing minigame
The minigame itself is done. All that it needs is a shop and a few user interface tweaks.

75%
 

Item images
Just as she redid the cat graphics, Kat is redoing all of the item images with the exception of the Free Cat Certificate. I have no idea how far she is, but I’ll choose a random percentage. She just told me that she’s about 3/5 of the way done, so that means her half is 60% completed and my half is 0% completed.

30%
 

Mobile VKitty
The speed test and email spam pages are up. That’s about it, though.

2%
 

Orange Kitten

Cats for stupid browsers like IE that can’t use SVGs
So far, it can generate kittens with different coat colors. I hope to have it able to make cats and old cats, as well as all of the patterns soon.

13.42%
 

bb-NoSpamUser

bb-NoSpamUser is ready!  It’s a very simple plugin, with less code than the WordPress version.  Unfortunately for all of the non-up-to-date hosts out there, it requires PHP5, but if somebody could port it to PHP4, I’d be glad to include the code.

The logic is simple: When somebody goes to the registration page — either the one where you enter information or the one where the account is created — their IP address is checked with StopForumSpam.com.  When somebody tries to register, it checks their email address and username.  That’s all it does.  It’s that simple.

Automated Forum Moderation

I was thinking today: there are a lot of kinds of human-generated spam that can be blocked by an automated script.  (The bot-generated spam is almost always blocked by Akismet.)

  • Double posting — Most forums have a rule against this, but it still happens.  Sometimes it’s allowed in a certain forum (like the sandbox on my forums), or allowed a certain period of time after the previous post was made.
  • Bumping up old topics — Most forums have a problem with this.  It is simply not socially acceptable to bring up a conversation from 2001 that hasn’t been posted on since then.
  • One-word posting — “lol” is not an acceptable post on any forum I know of.  It would be pretty simple to block posts with no spaces in them, and also have a minimum character count per post.

I’ve decided to make a plugin for bbPress that blocks the three types of human-generated spam I just listed.  If anyone has any ideas on other things I could block with the plugin, please tell me here.

Edit:

I have completed the development of Automated Forum Moderation‘s first release.

Googlebot is spamming me o.0

I’m notified on every 404 error via an rss feed by my blog.  When googlebot started indexing non-existant pages, I got spammed.  The feature that I installed to be a notification of broken links turned into a way that googlebot (unknowingly) spammed me!

You can see this WordPress.org support forums topic for the way that I solved the problem.

~Ben