February 20, 2006
Trackback Spam Attack
We've started getting disgusting trackback spam, so we've introduced a monitoring system: trackbacks will still be accepted, but Big Lizards will have to approve them before they're published.
Shouldn't affect anyone here... the trackback will still show up, just a few hours later.
Sorry for the inconvenience; but for some unfathomable reason, some deranged individuals seem to believe that people who read political blogs automatically pore through the trackback listings (of ancient posts), desperately hoping to find a link to a particular kind of website... that kind being (one presumes) so difficult to find otherwise.
Hatched by Dafydd on this day, February 20, 2006, at the time of 6:43 AM
TrackBack URL for this hissing: http://biglizards.net/mt3.36/earendiltrack.cgi/506
The following hissed in response by: Joshua Macy
I don't think the trackback spammer's motives are so mysterious; they're just hoping to inflate the Google rank of the page. It's not your readership they want, it's your connectivity.
The above hissed in response by: Joshua Macy at February 20, 2006 7:16 AM
The following hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh
This is why sites like Power Line don't accept trackbacks (John told me): they had a trackback spam attack that was so thick, it was almost like a DDOS.
So far, there were just three, and I killed them within a few minutes of them being posted. With the moderation for trackbacks, no more will get through to be published.
But I have a feeling it's all just a bunch of spambots, which means they may not care whether they get published or not: once they find a site that accepts any trackbacks, they may just flood it.
I hope it doesn't work that way. I'll investigate the MT-Blacklist plugin and see if there is anything I can do to block them... but they invent new originating URLs with every spam, so I'm not sure what a blacklist plugin can do about it.
If it gets really bad, I will reluctantly have to turn off trackbacks until I can talk to Six Apart and find out what I can do. I don't want to wake up tomorrow and find 100 ersatz "trackbacks" awaiting approval!
The above hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh at February 20, 2006 7:23 AM
The following hissed in response by: Kathy K
100 - only 100?
There are plugins for 'closing' old trackbacks. They let you set trackbacks older than x days to 'off'. Helps a lot. I get very little trackback spam since I starting closing the old ones (I use wordpress, but the concept still applies).
The following hissed in response by: David
Here's a resource page for dealing with comment/trackback spam in the Movable Type environment:
I looked for something similar to Spam Karma 2 (a Wordpress plugin that's eliminated nearly all spam from my blog), and there are several possible candidates. And SpamLookup "has been integrated into MT 3.2" although I have no idea how it may be configured--MT docs deal with that? DisguiseTrackbackURL looks like an interesting approach, similar to disguising email addresses to thwart email harvesters.
The above hissed in response by: David at February 20, 2006 11:46 PM
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