I know a number of the people who visit here have blogs of their own, and most, from what I have seen, also use wordpress as their blogging software. Lately, it seems, some automated spam program has been spamming wordpress blogs with comments that appear like this:
or similar. The spam blocker, Akismet, for WordPress doesn’t seem to be too good at picking them up. So what to do?
Here’s a post on the wordpress forums about the issue. I went to this page, and followed the advice Jill gives there, to block the IP addresses listed. Rather than give you the steps to do so here, you’ll get a more complete look at the situation by visiting those 2 pages I linked above.
On a related note, I recently had my site hacked and spammed by some iniquitous villains. The way the spam manifest itself was a bunch of links to all kinds of pharmaceutical drugs and drug companies, insurance companies, and whatnot. The links didn’t show up on the webpages, but would only be noticed if you view the page source/hmtl code for the page. It would always show up at the bottom of the code. I say ‘always’ of course, because it happened more than once. I checked around the web a little more recently, and found a bunch of sites that had been similarly infected. WordPress forums helped out a bit, and I was able to, so far, remove the links and code, and (I THINK) block them from injecting their nastiness onto my epic website any further. Here is the post I made on the forums that helped me out. If you have any similar issues, the info there should help remove the bad code. The main thing, I think, is to upgrade to the newest version of WordPress as soon as possible. It appears, to me, that a problem lies in the code of earlier versions of wordpress, and that allows hackers to get in to your site, inject their code and there’s not much you can do to stop it. I upgraded to the newest version of WordPress and haven’t had another problem so far – knock on wood. I highly recommend if you aren’t up to date that you run over and get your site updated.
One of the problems I ran into with this spam/hacking business (the links on my source code, not the comments I mention at the start of this blog) is that google dropped my blog from their engine. Bad, bad, bad – I went to this page and requested my site be picked up by the Googles again. Fortunately, Matt Cutts loves me, and my site wasn’t banished too long. Some of the pages are still being picked up, but it’s much better now. As long as I don’t get these darn hackers jumping in and messing things up again, all should be OK.
If you haven’t got your wordpress blog up to date, update right away.
PS – yep, that’s me in the pic. Cool, eh?