Despite blocking several known bad bots who harvest data and images via .htaccess, my site was still getting hit fairly hard with bandwidth leeches.
On top of the .htaccess block, i am running Akismet for WordPress that does a great job of sorting through comments and deciding what is spam or not.
Last but not least i recently installed SI CAPTCHA Anti-Spam by Mike Challis. This plugin added another layer of security to my post comment box, and on the register and forgot password areas.
This morning i was reading an article on a WordPress.com site and found a link to another site called Bad Behavior. Below is a snippet from the website.
“Welcome to a whole new way of keeping your blog, forum, guestbook, wiki or content management system free of link spam. Bad Behavior is a PHP-based solution for blocking link spam and the robots which deliver it.
Bad Behavior is one of the Internet’s most trusted solutions for helping to prevent link spam and other malicious activity, from well-known sites to the smallest blogs.
Bad Behavior complements other link spam solutions by acting as a gatekeeper, preventing spammers from ever delivering their junk, and in many cases, from ever reading your site in the first place. This keeps your site’s load down, makes your site logs cleaner, and can help prevent denial of service conditions caused by spammers.”
Here is a direct download link on WordPress.org if you want to try this plugin, or you can just search for “Bad Behavior” from withing your sites add plugin link. Otherwise just upload the plugin file with an FTP program to your WordPress plugins directory and activate the plugin. Setup is straight forward with just one screen.
In order to make the most out of Bad Behavior plugin you need to register an account on Project Honey Pot and get an Access Key. The key enables a quick look up of blacklisted IP’s and user agent strings, among other things.
I was amazed how much of my bandwidth and system resources were being used by the underbelly of the Internet!
So far this solution is working well for me. This log screen capture is a snippet of about 3 hours since installing the Bad Behavior plugin and Project Honey Pot access key.
If you install this plugin i would suggest closely watching it’s logs to be sure it is not blocking any of your members, or other resources that are needed on your blog.