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#176 2020-01-07 07:47:28

tahanson43206
Member
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 3,101

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

For SpaceNut and other moderators ...

AbigailWes is the latest perfectly good ID to be appropriated by an Internet sales promoter.

MichaelRipit can be added to the list.  He seems to have run out of gas after making 25 copies of his unreadable post.

Here is an idea I've not heard before:

How about setting up a simple password system for registration, similar to the daily password used by armed forces to coordinate movements in dangerous situations.

The password for today is: woodland

Who Goes there? Sergeant Snorkel

What is the password?  I don't know

Permission denied!

Who goes there? Beetle Bailey

What is the password? woodland

Advance Private Bailey

In this system, the password for the day would be published at the point of registration, along with the legal verbiage.

A robot would have to be pretty sophisticated to handle this (or it would have to be programmed to look for the password) so a human being would have to take the time to read the registration page and enter the password.

The FluxBB package would have to be updated with code to support this feature.

****
Interesting! I visited fluxbb.org/forums and entered a search for posts, using the keyword security

The very first response is from 2019-10-16, concerning a use of a simple math test to assist with filtering of registrations.

That implies the code to offer this is available to download and update to the FluxBB software package.

Applicants to the NewMars forum would almost certainly be folks who could handle a simple math challenge.

SpaceNut ... I understand the Mars Society is an all volunteer organization, and the time of each volunteer is precious.

Perhaps the labor involved in updating the FluxBB software could be distributed into parts which could be handled by non-Privileged forum members and those which require System Administrator privileges (and responsibilities).

In the course of reviewing recent posts to the FluxBB.org forum, I learned that FluxBB.org is hosted in France.

A quick check of the Development Team shows a decidedly International participation.

Is anyone else in the current active forum community interested in exploring the topic of security features available in FlubBB?

If we find something that would help SpaceNut to limit the number of fake logins, we would still have to persuade the Mars Society volunteer(s) to allocate the time (and risk) needed to apply (and test) the updates. 

The time required will vary, but I think an estimate of several hours is reasonable. 

(th)

Last edited by tahanson43206 (2020-01-07 14:30:49)

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#177 2020-01-07 10:10:03

tahanson43206
Member
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 3,101

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

For SpaceNut about FluxBB ...

I decided to try to register with FluxBB.org today, in hopes of learning more about what might be done to help you with the chore of dealing with bogus logins.

I ran into what appears to be a (probably minor bug) right off the bat.

I received a temporary password via email, and used that to log in, but I could not update the password afterward.

Here is a message I posted on the forum:

Hello,

Thank you for accepting my registration request today, and for sending a temporary password by email.

The login worked and everything seems to be working.

However, I cannot see a way to change my login password.

The "Profile" option would seem to be the right place to look, but a curious thing is happening.

When I open "Profile", I am presented with some options to change.

I click "Save" and FluxBB reports success in saving the options, but nothing happens after that.

My expectation is that the program would accept the options and then go on to display the full profile.

I did search for "how to change password" but most of the responses did not seem to fit the situation I am seeing.

Thanks for your consideration of this inquiry.

tahanson43206 (from NewMars.com forum as a member)

Just FYI ... (th)

Edit: A response appeared, but it was just an opening offer.

Here is a link to the conversation, if anyone (member or reader) is interested:
https://fluxbb.org/forums/viewtopic.php?pid=65437

Edit#2: More for SpaceNut re clutter from registrations

The psychological study reported at the link given below was about why some people leave shopping carts in the parking lot, instead of returning them to the little corrals provided by the supermarket.  However, the article includes a general observation that (I think) may apply to the bogus registrations problem you are dealing with.

The data above suggests that as a situation broaches on deviance, more people will trend toward disorder; once we have permission to pursue an alternative action, we will do so if it suits us.

https://getpocket.com/explore/item/why- … ket-newtab

What I take from the article is reinforcement for the belief that going after untidy signals quickly (as you are doing by cleaning up posts) is a low cost way of preventing more serious breakdown of a system.

The cost to you is the time you have to take, and the burden on your normally kindly nature.

The benefit would appear to be that the time invested prevents much worse situations from developing.

I still recommend adding text to the Registration page to do two things:

1) Advise spammers their offerings are not appreciated
2) Advise folks who ARE needed and wanted of the skills/experience/insights that will add to the culture you are building in this forum

Edit #3: A reply arrived from Franz, who is (possibly) the lead developer of FluxBB.  That reply is preliminary.  I sent a further clarification of the problem.

(th)

Last edited by tahanson43206 (2020-01-07 19:02:16)

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#178 2020-01-07 11:09:29

tahanson43206
Member
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 3,101

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

For SpaceNut re Dealing with Spam

This is a new post because it (hopefully) deserves to be considered on its own, separate from previous posts.

There is a way that the members of this forum can help you to identify desirable new members without your having to do a thing, except admit approved ID's when they are recommended by an existing member.

The solution that is available is to set up a second FluxBB web page for Registrations

This new web site would run alongside the existing one.  It would be open to all the thousands of spammers in the world, along with the small number of highly desirable prospective members.

The existing web site would be changed to only admit registrations for new ID's you enter into the database, after they are recommended by members here.

The members here do not need to register with the Registration forum.  All registration applications would be visible to everyone, along with all the obnoxious spam. 

The text in the Registration page for This forum would be changed to guide applicants to the Registration web page, where they would register and submit their application for membership in the main forum.

As a suggestion to speed things up, the existing list of ID's already registered with the forum could be copied over to the new one.

(th)

Last edited by tahanson43206 (2020-01-07 11:10:50)

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#179 2020-01-07 17:29:26

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 19,235

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

The thought of a two step process and increased catcha or other tests are a solution as well as would be simply removing the login function from view and if a real person needs to get back in that has an account an email reply link would be sent to get the person back in is another from a list of admins to contact.

Now to go clean up the forum and userlist as much as I can.

Marissa719 is the same viagra spammer as the other server name

I did a check on the 35 same post content in Russian claiming to be sweden and it was a tower tour advertisement...

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#180 2020-01-07 19:00:06

tahanson43206
Member
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 3,101

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

For SpaceNut re #179

A separate FlubBB forum package to handle registration would take a load from your shoulders.

It would ** also ** relieve the volunteer IT staff at Mars Society from having to upgrade the primary forum web site, other than to turn off the registration page.

If an ID is accepted by the second site, then you  could create the ID on the primary site and send the temporary password to the email of the new user.

Since the rate of arrival of valuable new members is (about) one per year, you would not be overburdened by the steps to accept a new member.

(th)

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#181 2020-01-08 09:07:34

tahanson43206
Member
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 3,101

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

For SpaceNut and anyone who may be interested in my attempt to join the FluxBB.org primary site ...

Breakthrough! The latest version of FluxBB uses the word "profile" twice.  One is used to change the password, and the other is used to set some options.

I have offered the suggestion that another word beside "profile" for the little options button might help first time registrants to avoid confusing the two.

In any case, I will now be looking for any insights that may be available for addressing the persistent spam registration problem that plagues this site, and (I'm sure) many others as well.

At this point, in the absence of new information which (I hope) will be forthcoming, I am inclined to favor the suggestion made earlier, of creating a separate FluxBB site for registrations only.  That site would be set up with administrator and moderators willing to allocate time to filtering/vetting applicants for membership in the primary site.

The primary site registration would then be adjusted to ONLY admit ID's approved by the primary site administrator (SpaceNut).

The activities in the special Registration site would be visible to everyone, just as the primary site is today.

All spammers would go after that site just as they do now with the primary site, but someone OTHER than SpaceNut would ban those who need to be banned.

This concept, if implemented, would be unique in the world (as far as I know) and it would demonstrate the advantage of associating with the Mars Society.

(th)

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#182 2020-01-08 17:15:47

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 19,235

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

The issue with the forum is you need direct access to the file locations that would need to be edited and as well the computer needs to have the installs done on it. I will be making an effort to communicate to the Mars society IT so as to have them begin to address the issues.

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#183 2020-01-09 14:34:12

tahanson43206
Member
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 3,101

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

This is for SpaceNut and for moderators who might be interested ...

At the FluxBB.org site I searched for posts about management of spam registrations.

Among the posts I found one that offered an explanation for how a particular successful patch was implemented.  The technique was to create the registration page with a hidden field.  Naturally humans would not fill out the field, but apparently bot software will, so it is possible to detect bots and delete them immediately.

I still think that setting up a separate branch of the Newmars.com forum for registrations is the best overall solution, but certainly the bot detection modification can be installed on THAT site.  Humans who are trying to sell their wares by doing manual registration can still gain preliminary registered status, but interaction with a moderator should take care of most of them.

I did notice that one post implemented an automatic deletion of accounts which register but do not post within 7 days.

https://fluxbb.org/forums/viewtopic.php?id=6704

(th)

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#184 2020-01-09 17:05:42

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 19,235

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

I did clean up the ones that did spam and had been banned today.
The other thing is to take a 2 page registration in that the first gives a false reply to completion  for a false account creation and a second that does an IP match to ealier records while doing a second registration to detect the bots.

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#185 2020-01-10 05:25:36

tahanson43206
Member
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 3,101

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

Off to the races again ...

DellaRoder looks like an ID that can be retired immediately

NicholasWy is an ID that appears to have been dropped off by a bot.  However, it was designed to try to look innocuous.

If the Administrator of a Registration site had the inclination, the message from NicholasWy could be provided a challenge message such as:

For NicholasWy re #1

Your post appears to have been dropped off by a robot software package.  Why have you registered in this forum?

If no reply is received in one week the ID will be retired.

***
(th)

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#186 2020-01-10 16:58:48

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 19,235

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

I see both and will remove them.
I think the secondary device and confirmation number after account checks woul make for a system to block them.

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#187 2020-01-12 12:00:52

JoshNH4H
Member
From: Pullman, WA
Registered: 2007-07-15
Posts: 2,526
Website

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

Hi everyone!

I noticed that I still have mod powers on the forum and I wanted to ask again to have them removed as I have resigned as a moderator


-Josh

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#188 2020-01-12 16:40:07

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 19,235

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

Ok I can do that and hopefully not screw it up

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#189 2020-02-01 19:53:08

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 19,235

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

report of new guy post as always ban and delete, or just delete the post

camera product post

saved in the report

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#190 2020-02-03 18:09:47

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 19,235

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

I now have two seemingly legit users that are sharing the same IP with different email server names that they give a friendly greeting first post in the outer space advocacy topic.

I will save there post in the report function as these are not what we are looking for.

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#191 2020-02-15 12:29:15

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 19,235

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

I see that the latest ban was from registering in june of last year. Thanks Robertdyck for cleansing the forum.
Took care of 3 others today and banned a batch before they could do harm.

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#192 2020-04-03 15:20:10

kbd512
Administrator
Registered: 2015-01-02
Posts: 3,587

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

SpaceNut,

I've had to ban 2 users in the last hour or so for posting their fraudulent / illegal advertisement spam.

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#193 2020-04-03 15:48:26

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 19,235

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

I did 5 earlier in the day since they have nothing else to do....

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#194 2020-04-12 17:42:31

tahanson43206
Member
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 3,101

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

For Moderators ....

In the absence of SpaceNut, I notice a recent accumulation of Spam Artists testing the waters to see if they will be allowed to stick around.

Most recent:  DeeU176148

Previous:  Shivov45

Previous: NathanielN

(th)

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#195 2020-04-19 13:21:35

SpaceNut
Administrator
From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 19,235

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

Just deleted banned 7 users in outer space advocacy I am the new guy posts

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#196 2020-04-21 06:55:43

tahanson43206
Member
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 3,101

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

In the absence of SpaceNut, the spammers have been testing the waters ... now we have this spammer: ClaudeMaw

The misbehavior is a step up from the past couple of weeks.

It would (seems to me) be a good time for a moderator to take what actions their powers permit to deal with this particular individual.

(th)

Last edited by tahanson43206 (2020-04-21 06:56:07)

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#197 2020-04-21 08:21:25

kbd512
Administrator
Registered: 2015-01-02
Posts: 3,587

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

tahanson43206,

User "ClaudeMaw" has been banned and offending posts removed.  Thanks for the heads up.

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#198 2020-04-21 09:40:19

tahanson43206
Member
Registered: 2018-04-27
Posts: 3,101

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

For kbd512 re #197

Glad to see your powers include banning!

Thanks for taking action!

It's good to know the Sheriff's Deputy is standing in!

(th)

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#199 2020-04-21 22:36:25

clark
Member
Registered: 2001-09-20
Posts: 6,265

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

All hail.

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#200 2020-04-22 09:53:44

elderflower
Member
Registered: 2016-06-19
Posts: 1,260

Re: Okay guys, we need new moderators... - Want a job? Post here or nominate.

SpaceNut wrote:

Just deleted banned 7 users in outer space advocacy I am the new guy posts

There's another bunch of the same sort now on Other Space Advocacy.

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