December 26th, 2007, 09:59 PM
Could be nothing...
So I run a small website forum for a gaming clan/guild/group, and said website is utilizing phpBB. I don't have too much trouble with getting rid of the occasional idiot who wants to sell me viagra and porn(oh how clever!), but I stumbled upon something very strange today, and I just thought I'd share.
I had a new regsitered user, johnkthegreat.
I do not know John, nor do I know why he is so great. I instantly thought it was a fake user, so I deleted it. In my haste, I neglected to copy down the IP address used to register, so in my slightly angry-at-myself but curious state, I googled johnkthegreat.
What I found, was fairly remarkable. This user has signed up for a couple THOUSAND phpBB forums on the net. Almost all, if not all(I didn't step through 30,000 pages of results) of the results are links to his profile page on a forum. Each of the ones I clicked was the exact same account as was created on my forum. He had registered, and placed his website:
In that section of the profile page. This website, oddly enough, links to a tripod page that is not yet created. It's almost as if, whoever this is, they are signing up for tons of sites prematurely, or testing some spamming functionality. Hmm...
I'm not really sure where to go with this yet, but I figured I'd toss it out to the Antionline community, and see what you all thought.
December 26th, 2007, 10:14 PM
Doesn't look like he has registered with AO yet... definitely sounds suspicious... did he post anything after registering? Did you note the time lapse between account creation and deletion?
If you run a google search with you still get about 18,000 results. I have yet to find a single post by the actual user... here is a post apparently about him though...
anyone speak/read whatever that is? some kind of Arabic? That is weird though... too bad you didn't log the IP...
ამჟამად აქ 8 მომხმარებელია :: 2 რეგისტრირებული, არცერთი უჩინარი და 6 სტუმარი [ ადმინისტრატორი ] [ მოდერატორი ]
ყველაზე მეტი,80 მომხმარებლის ერთდროული შემოსვლის დროა ორშ ივლ 16, 2007 12:38 pm
რეგისტრირებული მომხმარებლები: johnkthegreat, Naia
მე და კარვის მისტიური მომხმარებელი ...
\"Those of us that had been up all night were in no mood for coffee and donuts, we wanted strong drink.\"
December 27th, 2007, 12:25 AM
He never posted a thing, and never really did anything on the site. I really screwed up by deleting him, but perhaps he will create the account at some point. In any case, he was not a member of any group that could post on the forum, which may have lead to him not being able to post.
I'm wondering if it's just a generated user name, done by a bot, for purpose of spamming.
That text is definately Arabic, too bad my ex and I don't speak or I'd get her to translate it.
December 27th, 2007, 03:34 AM
you cant translate what it means in sign language? =)
Originally Posted by Raelz
does your site have a image string generator that you have to input to register?
December 27th, 2007, 05:29 AM
Indeed, the site uses Captcha technology, but most of them can be broken fairly easily. I've got a site showing you how to do so, and showcasing the ease.
Originally Posted by ArPaNET
It's not the registering that's bothering me, as it's not really happening in more than 2-3 fraudulent sign-ups a month, but the strange ability to google this username, and find him signed up for 30,000 forums like mine.
December 27th, 2007, 10:47 AM
December 28th, 2007, 12:22 AM
An Albanian bot living in the Marshall Islands... interesting... from the above post, I had guessed something completely different... damn.
Only trust Pipe-smoking Penguins.
December 28th, 2007, 03:31 PM
Actually it is rather strange. There is a table of site languages and another one for timezones.
All the phpBB bots I have seen take the first entries. I would have expected them to use the site defaults?
December 28th, 2007, 05:54 PM
maybe it isn't a bot! Maybe it is a lonely guy just busting away at his computer all night lol...