Comment Spam in WordPress

Comment Spam in WordPress

When bringing up a topic like fighting spam most would think of your normal inbox. Anyone who has run a blog will tell you about comment spam. That is the same sort of spam you get in your inbox, except it is hitting the comments section of your blog. These are really annoying because if you bulk delete them, you may end up deleted a valid comment.

Turn of Comments

The easiest way to fight spam is to turn comments off. This may be the best solution for you if comments from site visitors is not important.

You can turn off comments for new articles by going to “Settings/Discussion”.

turn off commentsThe downside with doing this after you have started blogging is it doesn’t do it for published articles. What you need to do now is going through all your articles and turn it off. You can do this by following these instructions:

click on screen options

click on screen options

enable discussion

enable discussion

untick appropriate options

untick appropriate options

An alternative is to install a plugin to turn it off on all posts in one click. If you do this I would strongly recommend backing up your site before hand.

The manual approach

If you are only getting a small amount of comment spam you can make sure comments are not automatically approved. To do this go into the “settings” menu and select “discussion”. You should see this:

manually approve

All you need to do is ensure “Comment must be manually approved” is checked. This will ensure that the comment s do not display until you say so.

The automatic approach

In the same way an anti-virus protects your PC you can use a plug-in to protect your site. There are a few of them available. Like anti-virus software you will likely find the most reputable ones are paid.

The first one that comes to mind Akismet. This comes with all default WordPress installs as it is from the people who maintain WordPress. This is also the module that WordPress.com use to moderate comments and from memory it works quite well.

An alternative plugin to Akismet is CleanTalk. To have a look at this just search for “spam” in the plugins section of your WordPress site. This one is very easy to get going and it comes with a trial period.

As with any WordPress plugin it is a good idea to check the rating. If it rates below four stars I would recommend doing further research into why it rates lower. It may be that the issues that effect other people may not effect you.

Best comment spam method

There is no right or wrong way of combatting comment spam, just ways that work and ways that don’t. The best approach would be to try different methods and see which gives the best results.

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