Lunacy Unleashed

Notes from the field in the War on Spam

Bad Behavior 2.0.6 Test

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Bad Behavior 2.0.6 is currently being tested.

Many of you have noticed the large upturn in spam flow in the past few weeks. Bad Behavior 2.0 to date has blocked much of it, but has not been able to block nearly as much of it as I would like.

I am currently testing a new spam blocking method which looks, for the moment, to be catching virtually all of the remaining uncaught spam which I am seeing.

I’m not releasing it immediately, though, so that I can evaluate whether it is generating any false positives, and if so, whether the affected users are able to clean their computers of the viruses and other malware which they contain, and whether this is sufficient to resolve the problem.

It will probably be about a week before I have enough data to be sufficiently satisfied with the false positive handling to put it out for general release, but so far I haven’t seen anything which would qualify as a false positive. It did catch one human being whose computer, it turned out, was sending out thousands upon thousands of e-mail and blog spams.

But if you’d like to get your hands on this code early, I am offering a pre-release package to anyone who has previously contributed financially at least $5.00 to Bad Behavior development (or anyone who contributes now). Just e-mail me and I’ll get your copy sent out.

Keep in mind that I haven’t fully evaluated whether the new code will generate false positives, though the preliminary results are that it should not stop anyone who isn’t actually sending spam, so keep a copy of the previous release around in case you don’t like it or have problems.

And don’t forget to subscribe to the RSS feed or the mailing list. (They’re the same content.)

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August 21, 2006 Posted by | Bad Behavior, Blog Spam, Spam, WordPress | 9 Comments

Bad Behavior Project Update

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There’s no release of Bad Behavior this week, as no new bugs have been reported, and no new spammers have been blocked.

But there is a posting, because I am hard at work on a related project to identify and block more spammers before they can even send their first spam, and I need your help.

If you would like to help with this project, and you are running a high traffic blog getting a lot of blocked spam (or missed spam), you may qualify. E-mail me at badbots@ioerror.us with your blog address and an estimate of how much spam Bad Behavior blocks, and how much it misses, in any given day. If you’re only getting a small amount of spam, it’s probably not worth it; I’m looking for higher traffic sites.

You can also help by making a financial contribution. I develop Bad Behavior in my limited spare time, and every little bit allows me to devote more time to battling spammers.

August 11, 2006 Posted by | Bad Behavior, Blog Spam, Spam, WordPress | 2 Comments

Bad Behavior 2.1 and 3.0 Roadmap

When I released Bad Behavior 2, I noted that due to time constraints I was unable to complete everything on the roadmap. Most of that is because spammers have dramatically stepped up their activity in recent weeks and the new version provides greatly improved protection against their attacks. Part of it is that as an unpaid project, I can only devote so much spare time to it.

Now that Bad Behavior 2.0 has stabilized, it’s time to update the roadmap in preparation for the next minor (2.1) and major (3.0) releases.

Continue reading

August 5, 2006 Posted by | Bad Behavior, Blog Spam, ExpressionEngine, Firefox, Internet Explorer, LifeType, MediaWiki, Spam, WordPress | 15 Comments

Bad Behavior 2.0.5

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Bad Behavior 2.0.5 has been released to provide small bug fixes.

New in this release (since 2.0.4):

  • A bug affecting MediaWiki and ExpressionEngine users, and possibly others, caused database errors to be thrown when a POST request was received. This has been fixed. (I thought I’d fixed this previously, but apparently not. This one should fix it for real.)
  • A couple of additional spambots have been identified and blocked.

Download Bad Behavior now!

As always, if you find Bad Behavior valuable, please consider making a financial contribution. I develop Bad Behavior in my spare time, and every little bit means I have more spare time to devote to its development.

And don’t forget to subscribe to the RSS feed or the mailing list. (They’re the same content.)

August 5, 2006 Posted by | Bad Behavior, Blog Spam, ExpressionEngine, MediaWiki, Spam, WordPress | 8 Comments