Spamming on your WordPress site is an undeniable fact. Stopping spam in its tracks is essential to prevent your site from making a poor first impression or ruining its reputation. Although one cannot stop spam completely, there are a lot of ways to deal with it. Below are the most common WordPress spam problems and their solutions.
One common type of spam is comment spam. If you allow comments on your WordPress site, you will surely get some comment spam. As your website grows, this spam will likely become an even bigger issue. Comment spam can be both automated, i.e. those posted by spam bots using short and generic messages as a way to include links, and manual. Comment spam makes it difficult for legitimate users to have conversations while wading through crowded comment sections. This also makes your site look cluttered and unprofessional, and several of these spam comments include malicious links and viruses. Nevertheless, there are some quick solutions to help with comment spam.
One way is to reduce the number of links permitted per post in your comments. A downside to this is that legitimate users may also be blocked from posting may links but since this measure will help slow spam down, it is definitely worth it. You can also create a list of recognizable ‘blacklisted’ keywords. This way, your WordPress site will flag any comment that contains one or more of these words, making it easier for you to spot and delete them. Another method is to limit comment privileges to the registered users. An added advantage is that it can encourage visitors to sign up to your website. Yet another way is to set up a comment moderation system, which will require all the comments to be approved by a person to be permitted to appear on your site. This can be an efficient and smart strategy if you have the time and resources for it. One can also disable pingbacks and trackbacks in WordPress for blogs that do not need them or turn comments off for old posts. This can considerably reduce comment spam. Furthermore, using anti-spam plugins is always a powerful way to deal with comment spam. One of these is the bundled in Akismet anti-spam plugin that comes with many WordPress installations. This is one of best anti-spam plugin for WordPress. It is connected to a regularly updated spam database and is thus extremely proficient at identifying troublesome comments and filtering them out – but be aware Akismet is not free for any site that is commercial in any way, even blog sites with and advert have to pay. Other well-reviewed alternatives are Sucuri and Antispam Bee. You can also use ReCAPTCHA, an advanced form of CAPTCHA, which is a technology used to differentiate between bots and human users. Moreover, the Yoast Comment Hacks plugin can be used to set a minimum and maximum comment length to combat comment spam.
With regard to contact form spams, Contact Form 7 is the most targeted contact form plugin as it is the most popular and a free WordPress contact form plugin. With high traffic and hundreds of spam emails every day, spam contact form submissions are a huge issue for WordPress websites. Among the many ways to manage such spam, quizzes are a known way. They work by asking simple questions to users that bots cannot answer. Thus, only the people who provide the correct answer are allowed to submit the contact form. Additionally, Akismet also works with Contact Form 7 and blog comments. Other WordPress anti-spam plugins that can help with WordPress spam are Contact Form 7 Honeypot, Really Simple CAPTCHA, WP-SpamShield, Anti-spam, WPBruiser, and so on.
However the best anti spam plugin, in our opinion, is of course Fullwork’s Anti Spam. Our plugin has been developed to combat both automated ( bot ) spam and uses machine learning technology to detect human input spam.
These are some simple but effective measures that are necessary to take to substantially reduce spam on your WordPress website.