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I'm Losing Control...please Help!

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  • I'm Losing Control...please Help!

    I have a very, VERY tightly knit community. Friendships have been born because of my the point where we have monthly get togethers and frequent invites to each other's weddings. . . .
    Well, recently someone with absolutely NO time on his hands decided to prey upon the innocence of my members. He caused TOTAL havoc by creating about 7 different usernames and personas....causing arguments and disarray among my users. It got so bad at one point until I starting banning my OWN members. (of course that was BEFORE I knew what was going on)

    It took me a while to figure this all out because I was under the impression that I was dealing with 7 different people when in reality, it was 1 person with the same IP addresses. Well, now that the cat is out of the bag.....I feel as though things are 100 times worse. I feel paranoid....a ton of registered users who have NEVER posted are all 'coming out' now....Additionally, about 10-15 new users registered overnight all with somewhat unbelievable introductory posts. The situation is spiraling out of control.

    Things that I've done:
    #1- Closed forum to unregisted users & users who aren't logged in.
    #2- As of this afternoon, declined all new registrations.
    #3- Done IP searches on all supscious usernames....None are identical...and most aren't even similiar.

    My first question is, now that the board is closed to lurkers, how come in the WHO'S ONLINE section, I still have guests?

    2ndly, after doing an IP search, and a widely used internet provider comes up like Road Runner or there any other info I can find out? If so, how?

    Will someone PLEASE make other suggestions? I guess if my community was only a community...I wouldn't care....But I have about 1000 users who have clearly graduated from an online community to a FAMILY. I feel like I'm being molested.

    Thank you for reading this in it's entirety. I really apprecicate it.


  • #2
    Honestly i don't really find it that much heart breaking. Just do this:
    • Keep the real culprit blocked.
    • Post a thread explaining the whole issue.
    • Email the members through forums explaining the issue.
    • Post the same message on the website.
    • Give it more time, and everything will be back to normal.
    And lastly just be happy you caught the bad cat. You still see guests because users are still visiting your forum. They can't really see the board categories, threads, posts but admins can see how many people are actually online
    Out to Change the world!


    • #3
      Don't depend to much on IP checks, as most spammers will use proxy anyway. And there is not really a lot you can do about that to be honest apart from wait for them to post spam and then ban the IP they use. They will get bored first having to constantly mess around getting a new IP to use, as you can ban it much faster than they can get a new IP.

      I would tend to sit back and take a relaxed attitude. Just banning the IP each time they posts crap and delete the thread also to stop members getting involved in it.

      If you let them see there getting to you. That will fuel the fire for them to carry on. What you don't really want to do is get involved in the spam posts, posting something that some of your members may look down on you over.

      I would'nt start locking all your board down, otherwise they will just see it as they've won

      Better to take the silent approach, say nothing, ban IP, delete thread
      Last edited by MRGTB; Sat 17 Dec '05, 7:58pm.


      • #4
        Chit chat hardly seems the right place for this.

        I mean if I had an issue like this, I would probably to utilize my access to a members area. Just to minimize public issues.

        Seriously man, you are an admin & do little monitoring of ip's?


        • #5
          You can also block all the ips comes from proxy using .htaccess. One bad side effect is, the good members who also uses proxy to get online will also be blocked.
          Out to Change the world!


          • #6
            You could enable email validation and only 1 registered account per email address in the options. This would require the person making accounts to have an email address for each account he/she makes because an email is sent to the address they entered with activation information. It wont stop things 100% but it will slow things down. Or you can choose to moderate registrations manually if you dont have many valid people registering each day.
   | |
            7 Full vBulletin Lic.


            • #7
              If you know who it is, use the ' Miserable Users ' hack, from .. that sorts them out



              • #8
                Tachy goes to coventry
                So Cal Sportbike forum - So Cal Moto - Kawasaki Ninja 250R Forum - Custom vinyl decals - Southern California camping forum


                • #9
                  You guys are GREAT! Thanks so much.

                  The plot thickens. This miserable person is/was a part of an elaborate con game. It's deep. Charges may be filed.

                  Thanks for the advice. I'm now led to believe that it's actually a TWO person team causing the havoc.

                  Thanks again....I sincerely appreciate all replies posted here.


                  • #10
                    just change the settings to have one email per member like they said and have them verify it and use miserable users i keep everyone away with it . its so annoying. and check your ips and block them.. if you got mods have them kep an eye on the users comming in


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