How to stop comment spam on your WordPress website
What is Comment spam ?
Comment spam is a term used by spam blacklist servers such as Project Honey Pot to refer to a broad category of spambot or spammer postings which abuse web-based forms to post unsolicited advertisements as comments on forums, blogs, wikis and online guestbooks.
Whatever form it takes, comment spam is a real problem because:
- When your comment sections are filled up with spam messages, it’s harder for legitimate visitors to have conversations.
- Leaving spam comments on your content makes your site look unprofessional.
- A lot of these comments include malicious links, designed to trick visitors into giving away personal information.
Clearly, it’s vital to do everything you can to stop comment spam from appearing on your WordPress site.
6 ways to stop comment spam on your WordPress website for Good
The following six solutions are all smart ways to stop comment spam on your website.
1.Reduce the number of links allowed per post
Most comment spam is designed to add links in your comment section and trick people into clicking on them. Therefore, one way to combat spam is to permit fewer links in your comments. Legitimate visitors will also be prevented from posting many links, but slowing down the spammers can be worth that potential inconvenience.
From your WordPress dashboard, you can navigate to Settings → Discussion to make this change. Look for the Comment Moderation section:
Here you can decide how many links will be permitted in a comment before it is flagged for moderation. You can even reduce the number to zero if you want to require moderation for any comment with links.
2.Create a list of ‘blacklisted’ words
Many spam comments contain a lot of recognizable keywords. This makes it easier to spot them and to stop them from appearing on your website. You can simply create a ‘blacklist’ of words, and your site will flag any comment containing one of them.
To do this, return to Settings → Discussion in your WordPress dashboard and find the Comment Blacklist section:
Here, you can enter your list of words. When any comment is posted that contains one of those words, it will be sent straight to the trash. Of course, it’s important to choose the words in your blacklist carefully, so you don’t delete comments by legitimate posters.
3.Restrict comment privileges to registered users
The goal of most spammers is to post on as many pages and sites as possible. This means if you can make it more challenging for them to add their comments to your site, they may just move on to the next target.
You can achieve this by restricting comment privileges to people This puts an extra hurdle between spammers and your comment section. As a side benefit, it encourages visitors to sign up for an account or a membership.
This option is also available in the Settings → Discussion section in WordPress. You’ll find it under Other comment settings:
Simply check the box labeled Users must be registered and logged in to comment, and save your changes.
4.Set up a comment moderation system
In a nutshell, comment moderation is when you require some or all comments to be approved by a person before they are permitted to appear on your site. If you have the time and resources to spare, this can be a smart strategy.
In WordPress, you can enable a comment moderation system very easily. Simply go back to Settings → Discussion, and check out the Before a comment appears section:
By selecting Comment must be manually approved, any comments made on your site will be held as Pending until they are reviewed. You can then check out each one, and decide whether to let it through or trash it. You can find more advice on setting up a comment moderation system
5.Use an anti-spam plugin
Finally, we would be remiss not to mention anti-spam plugins. These tools can present a powerful way to stop comment spam and can take care of sorting the good comments from the bad for you.
This anti-spam plugin connects to a constantly updated database of spam, so it’s very proficient at recognizing which comments are trouble and filtering them out. It also enables you to see what comments have been flagged.
6.Move to a new comments system
This method won’t work for all sites, but some third-party comment systems, like Disqus, can help eliminate most of the spam for you. Disqus is actually what we use here ,Another option is to use Facebook comments on your site.
Spam comments can quickly clutter up your site, making it look unprofessional and driving real visitors away. Cleaning up all that spam after the fact is challenging. This means you should strongly consider putting a little upfront time into developing a strong anti-spam strategy.