WordPress being a weblog and not necessarily an eCommerce tool, a fabulous CMS but still has a threat to spam because of its huge installed base. But thankfully with advent of technologies and with time, several ways have come up to combat this problem in WordPress. In this article, we discuss below some of the best tips and tools to overcome this spam problem in WordPress.
- Don’t follow Comment Links
Bloggers put plugins in the comment area which has nofollow attribute for the author links, hoping these links to encourage more users to leave comments or feedback. This results to a large number of spam comments. It’s always a bad idea to use plugins that share link via comments. The quality of the blog comes into threat due to such mistakes.
Install Cookies for Comments plugins. This plugin sends users a stylesheet or image files whenever they access a page with comment form. This technique works as most spams are automated scripts and they don’t download any image or stylesheet. Cookies protect our sites from such spams in comment form and identify them as legit users.
- Activate Akismet
Akismet is one of the most valuable plugin for WordPress and is pre installed. Only activation is necessary using an API key. Without this, spam control in WordPress is almost impossible. Only drawback is that it is too sensitive and sometimes good comments can also be filtered as spam, but no worry. That’s recoverable.
- Add CAPTCHA Verification
Using CAPTCHA plugin is a very common tactics nowadays. One can also enable RECAPTCHA challenge on comment form. RECAPTCHA shows an image containing characters can be alpha numeric and the user needs them to type to prove them that they are human. Only drawback of captcha is that it does nothing to prevent sites from manually submitted spam comments.
- Use Honeypot
Honeypot technology is an effective method to trick spam bots. What one needs to do is to install and activate Spam Fighter. Upon activation, this will result in creating a hidden form in your comments area which is only visible to bots. Since spam bots are usually programmed to fill all fields in a form. If you are still struggling to understand such tools then you can Hire WordPress Developer from WPGeeks who will get things done for you.
- Comment Form should not contain Website URL field
URL field in comment form attracts spammers as easy mode of spamming. These comments usually contain a line of total irrelevance like any alpha numeric name etc. Removing the URL field from comment form will discourage such nuisance on website.
- Disable HTML
Disable HTML in comments to discourage links in comments. Use Peter’s Literal comments plugin by installing and activating it. Doing so will pass all HTML through WordPress filters.
- Disable Comments on Media attachment
Turn off comments on media attachments. WordPress automatically creates image attachment pages where users can see an image and leave a comment. If images are linked to the attachment page, then after some time, one will have lots of image attachment pages with comments enabled to them.
- Disable Trackbacks
A big portion of spam comment is trackbacks. One would find it in the default article settings under Discussion Settings. One can disable trackback on entire blog or on some post.
- Use Less annoying Captcha
Users find Captcha annoying and frustrating. Better use a simple maths problem, like addition etc to prove user as human. Install and activate Maths Quiz plugin. The plugin allows one to choose whether you want a simple plain text quiz or an image based maths quiz.
- Switch off Comments
The Discussion Settings contain another section called Default article settings. If the checkbox “Allow people to post comments on new articles“ is unchecked, comments on your WordPress site can’t be made. As such no spam can attack.
- Turn off Comment on old Posts
WordPress enables you to set the comment closure deadline. Check the box next to the option “Automatically close comments on article older than“ under other comments settings and old posts comments can be turned off to save them from comment spams.