• Comment Spammers: 2nd Time’s the Charm

    There’s a new level of blog comment spam out there that’s as wonderfully clever as it is evil. Here’s how it looks:

    Imagine you wrote a blog post about kola nuts. A few days later, you see this comment awaiting moderation:

    “Extracts from kola nuts are great energy boosters. Couple kola nut extracts with Vitamin B complex to increase energy and stamina. In addition, this combination will enhance circulation, protein metabolism and also maintain hormone balance.”

    While it’s not the most conversational comment, it’s also not overtly pushing any specific brands or products. Lots of people out there love to give unsolicited advice and opinions.

    Best (or worst) of all, the commentor leaves no URL. Surely they’d add a url for the link if they were comment spamming!

    But no. That’s why it works. Spammers now know that a huge percentage of bloggers have set comments to be automatically approved once the first comment has been approved by the moderator. That basically means that if a person leaves one legit comment on your blog, you trust them enough to let their future comments publish automatically.

    These spammers will send one fairly legit comment through your system without any URL so that it gets approved. Once approved, any future comments using the same email address will automatically publish. So they keep track of every blog where their comments get published and then they hit it sometime later with spam. And that comment will definitely have a spam link either in the URL field or in the body of the comment.

    So keep an eye on your auto-approved comments. Even though they passed your initial sniff test, they might come back to bite you later.