You are a target!
Off topic? Maybe, but we are linked to a lot of survival and preparedness blogs who can really benefit from what I’m about to share with you.
I hate blog spammers. Those are the ones who dump their porn links, investment links, and vigra links etc.. into the comments on your blog. (I spelled vigra wrong on purpose by the way) They are far worse than email spammers because they are stealing your intellectual property just like copycats, trademark & copyright thieves, and domain leeches. Yes, they are stealing your intellectual property and you may not even realize it.
There is a lot of time and effort that goes into building up a blog. After a while of writing content you begin to build up “Page Ranking” with Google and you start to gain “authority” on the web. Whenever you link to someone you pass a little bit of that authority on to the other person. Normally this is a good thing because in general practice you are linking to a relevant site and hopefully they link back to you. Survival sites tend to link to other survival sites, political sites to political sites, pet sites to pet sites and so on and so forth. Many times your commenters will drop a link to their blog in your comments. This is normally okay and there is nothing wrong with it if they are truly interested in what you have to say, take the time to read your posts and leave you a genuine and relevant comment. If they do that, you should welcome their link. This is networking…..However, sometimes, some unscrupulous trash of the Internet will dump a ton of their porn links, scammy business opportunity links or whatever in your comments. It’s these irrelevant links that damage your SEO (Search Engine Optimization) or in other words your Page Ranking and authority. Just like a parasitic worm one or two isn’t going to hurt much, but over time they build up and can be detrimental to your indexing on the web….meaning major loss of Internet traffic. If you’ve worked hard to build up your Pang Rank then that is your intellectual property and someone has just stolen it from you. I’m a trucker and I get this all the time on the road. Ever hear of drafting? That’s when someone follows a truck real real close to get better fuel mileage because of the vacuum from the truck pulling them along. It’s highly dangerous, but it’s also theft. Because for every little bit of energy that the drafting car saves, that’s how much energy has been stolen from the truck. These Blog spammers are no different. And they need to be stopped every way possible.
If you don’t moderate your comments, then I highly suggest you do. At a minimum, set your moderation to posts older than 7-14 days old because I’m about to tell you something that I just discovered that very few people know about. I’m on to the spammers and their dirty tricks.
After some recent spam attacks we set most of our blogs to full moderation. Almost immediately after that we started picking up spam, but the vast majority of them were to old posts. Posts you don’t see because they’ve already dropped off the first page. See the spammers are getting smarter, they want to hit the blogposts that you don’t notice. So why would they want to target older posts? They are going after good articles that are indexed high in the search engines, the ones that have that high authority and page ranking. So what’s happening is the spam is being targeted to your “new” readers that find you through Google search, while you are left oblivious to the spam unless someone tells you or you stumble upon it yourself. Since these are higher ranking pages, those parasites will keep pulling that page ranking down further and further with more links until it’s no longer indexed high in the search engines. Many of these links will direct to websites that will install malware onto your readers computers if they happen click on them….this is bad stuff we’re talking about.
Now here’s where the spammers get real sneaky. Let’s say you find out about that spam and you delete it. Then the next week you get another spam to the same article and you delete it…again and again and again. You begin to wonder, why are they targeting that same article all the time and not the others? I don’t know if there’s a term for it yet or not, but I’m going to call it a “homing device” The spammers have tagged your blog post.
Have you ever seen some wonky generic comment that didn’t make a whole lot of sense but it sounded real nice like they were complementing to you? Something like the following comments. (I’ve posted them in a jpg image for a reason)
These are typically, but not always, posted by anonymous commenters. What it is, is a way for the spammer to “tag” your blog posts without you realizing it. So you think to yourself: “Oh, thank you Mr. Anonymous for that wonderful comment, come back anytime.” And they will come back, but next time it’s with a spam bot. Try this, go to Google and type in exactly any of the above comments including the quotation marks. That will make Google search for those exact phrases. You will find thousands of them. All different blog posts and forums that have been tagged. The Spam bots then make their rounds searching for those same key phrases after those posts are old and buried. Remember these are parasites that you can’t see and they need to be removed. Turn on your comment moderation and start going through all of your old posts and remove not only the spam, but theses “Homing Device” comments. Look for ones that seem very generic and maybe a little off topic especially if they were left by an anonymous commenter. Some of them may be genuine comments, so try to use good judgment when removing them. The best thing to do is Google the phrase and if the exact same or very similar phrase comes up several times, then the odds are it’s one of these homing device comments. If you delete all of them then you should stop up to 90% of your blog spam. If you come across new ones that I do not have listed here then please email me at: americanprepper (at) yahoo (dot) com and I will add them to our list.
I will continue to build this list on this post and add links to spam filters that we will be trying out along with other tips and ideas to fight spam, so please return from time to time for more updates.
Here is the link to this page: http://www.americanpreppersnetwork.com/2010/02/blog-spam.html
*Update* A new spam just came in, I deleted it, but I found the post that it was intended for, this is a prime example of how this works. I posted an article on Dec 11th. The first comment wasn’t until January the 4th…The “Homing Device” two weeks later the spam starts. Look here: http://www.americanpreppersnetwork.com/2009/12/free-custom-mastheads-for-your-blog.html#comments
*Update 2/06/09* I’ve found out that one of the main spam bots that’s been hitting us is called XRumer Here is the wikipedia link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/XRumer for more information. This spambot can get past a lot of the moderation methods including word verification and email activation, and will even fool the moderator by posing a question such as “where can I find…such and such product?” And then will sign in with a different account as a different username and will answer it’s own question and provide a link.
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