Spam Avalanche

I am not sure if it was a special event, but for some reason on 04 Feb 2009, this blog was innundated with spam comments.

Now, as any blogger will know blogs get spam comments. We get a fair few of which most (99.85% if you believe Akismet Stats) get caught by the anti-spam. It is, rightly or wrongly, one of the prices you pay for having a blog. It is slightly amusing that around a third of the spam comments are advertising spam-commenting systems but most are tediously repetetive. Every now and then Heather gets it into her head to read, and subsequently rant about, some of them but generally we are happy to ignore them.

However, on Wednesday we were flooded with spam comments. According to Akismet stats (which broadly mirror my recollections), we had 3.5 times as many spam comments as the previous peak (09 Jan 09) and a massive 16 times as many as the average spam comments. We had more spam in that 24 hour period than we’d had in the whole of August and September last year. Fortunately Akismet caught the lot, but it was bizarre. In the time it took to click on “delete all spam now” another 50-odd messages arrived. Equally odd, few were “normal” spam in which something was advertised, most were just strings of random letters and urls pointing to random letter domains. I really have no idea what the spammers hoped to achieve, unless it was an attempt to overwhelm Akismet worldwide…

Anyway, the main point is that the volume of spam meant there was no way we were going to read through it and see if any legit messages had been trapped. In the massively unlikely event that you had a message deleted, this is why.

If anyone knows why 4 Feb was World Spam Day please let me know.

2 thoughts on “Spam Avalanche

  1. My blog’s still very new, so I hadn’t turned Akismet on. I figured it’d be a while before I ‘existed’ enough to be spammed, so I didn’t do it. Then yesterday, I had to hand-moderate five of them, so I turned it on. Went to bed, got up in the morning and there were another 30, and they were still rolling in, even as I was removing them.

    Creationists trying to do an odd sort of DoS attack? I kind of doubt it, but it was really odd.

  2. It would be funny if it was a CreationistDOS though 🙂

    New or old, blogs seem to be getting swamped with spam at the moment. Most of last year was very quiet (except March and April), but this month seems to be on track to beat them all.

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