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Thread: 2017 SPAM data

  1. #1
    Elite Member mmm4444bot's Avatar
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    2017 SPAM data

    For the second year running, recognition for the source of most SPAM on this site goes to India. (Don't worry Philippines; you're right up there, too.)

    And, again, this doesn't jive with global statistics. The vast majority of all reported SPAM on the planet comes from Ukraine.

    2017pie.JPG

    During the past year, I manually reported and banned 843 members posting SPAM -- for stuff like resorts providing sex with children, heroin by mail, forged employment histories built to order, Russian pornography, all manner of academic cheating services including PhD diplomas, to name only a very few examples.

    269 of these members posted from India. That's 32%. (I banned an additional 78 members who never posted anything but had toxic credentials.)

    Old-timers here may recall when we used to get 30-50 SPAMs a day. At that time, most of the SPAM here did come from Russia and Ukraine. The SPAM rate dropped substantially, however, after I began contacting businesses directly to ask why they paid people to plaster their URLs all over the place (interfering with the tutor/student relationship and possibly supporting forced-child labor). I also provide documentation that their business name, address, phone number and SPAM had been reported to databases. My hope was that many businesses would complain to whomever they had hired to increase traffic to their site or would cancel their agreement outright, so that, in turn, the name freemathhelp would eventually find its way down the supply chain to the actual spammers as not a good site to abuse. After all, once credentials get into akismet (one example), over 200,000 forums are able to reject registration attempts or purge those who've already joined.

    Aggressive reporting works. For two years now, the daily SPAM rate has been closer to five. This bar chart shows 2017 data (click to enlarge).

    2017rpts.JPG

    Ukraine apparently gets the message; India, not so much, yet.

    Also of note is a substantial increase during the past three months of spammers posing as math students, posting valid questions (sometimes even showing some work!), but it's just a ploy. Their profiles contain SPAM. So, if you reply to a "student" today and find the thread missing tomorrow, this could be why.

    Happy New Year.
    Last edited by mmm4444bot; 01-09-2018 at 04:49 PM. Reason: Typos
    "English is the most ambiguous language in the world." ~ Yours Truly, 1969

  2. #2
    Elite Member stapel's Avatar
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    Cool

    Thank you for your behind-the-scenes diligence. You help make like better for the rest of us!

  3. #3
    Elite Member mmm4444bot's Avatar
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    You're welcome.

    I don't always have time to manually check every new member on their join date. Eventually, I do search profile pages. Our volunteers can help prevent wasting their own time (i.e., typing a response to a fake math student), by taking 10 seconds to check profile pages of new members, first. If you see SPAM there, know that the entire thread will soon be deleted (when I get around to finding them, and the spammer is removed from the forum.)

    Please report such posts, if you find the profile-page SPAM first.
    "English is the most ambiguous language in the world." ~ Yours Truly, 1969

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