The Captcha is dead.

As has been widely reported by spammers lately the Captcha seems to be finally dead.    Myspace has been frantically changing their algo’s every couple of days recently but the bot makers are just as fast.

Just look at all the stuff that comes up in google.     From what I am hearing  spammers are gearing up for an all out attack on social networks.   I assume that if myspace doesn’t come up with a response soon  it will decline quickly.  

39 Responses to “The Captcha is dead.”

  1. The Captcha is dead - MySpace to follow « Bankwatch Says:

    [...] Source: The Captcha is dead. « The Paradigm Shift [...]

  2. Andy Arnott Says:

    Markus,

    The process on myspace is not bypassing the captcha, but rather exploiting a flaw in which when the bot runs into the bypass request it uses the myspace “invite a friend” page to reset the request. Myspace has sense patched it. If myspace was smart they would make some of the options like “only allow my friends to see my profile” a default option.

  3. Markus Says:

    Andy, my captcha has been attacked and easilly read. There are many programs that can read the msypace captcha. The invite a friend program is just one program that uses that bug. There are many others that work by just reading the captcha.

  4. The Forge · The Spammers Are Coming Says:

    [...] Lately, the war between spammers and anyone protecting an online community from them with CAPTCHAs (the portion of registration in forums or a social network or whatnot where you typically need to type out the distorted letters displayed to verify that you’re a human and not a bot) has intensified, with MySpace apparently re-working their algorithms every couple of days and the spammers moving just as quickly to adjust. [...]

  5. Mayo Says:

    So what to do Markus?? Remove the captcha?? :O

  6. Henrik Says:

    Security will always be a weapons race. The only way to make a permanent solution is to remove the incentive. I don’t know if that is possible though.

  7. Don Says:

    So if moderation is required for all posts, will that stop spammers? It has on my blog. No one comments or spams. On boards, members alert admins to spams, and the admins delete them, but not immediately. Can myspace, etc., put members of controlling posts on their spaces?

  8. raincoaster Says:

    I can’t imagine moderating all comments. The Akismet on my WordPress blog captures nearly a thousand spams a day; if all comments went into a moderation queue instead, I’d have to go in and strip them out by hand.

    What about more complex CAPTCHAs, like the photoimage ones? Those are impossible for current spambots to read.

  9. good4nothing Says:

    hey markus i heard you’re like super rich. is that for real?

  10. Mike Says:

    Forums just need to implement a self-moderation system combined with automatic spam filtering like pretty much every email program does now.

    All posts go through a bayesian like filter to determine if its spam or not, and if one gets through, the other forum members can mark the post as spam. If several people mark the post as spam it automatically gets removed and the bayesian filter gets trained to recognize similar posts later on. If one members profile is responsible for more then a couple spam posts it can easily be put on hold.

    Its really simple to do actually, probably take about 2-4hours to retrofit popular forum software with at least the automatic filter if they haven’t done it already. Adding the moderation system is slightly more difficult, but not much.

    The down side is performance, expect a drastic decrease, maybe as much as 0.5-1.0sec additional processing time per post. But the accuracy should be in the 95-99% range.

  11. 9tomorrows Says:

    Finally! I can’t stress how much I despise captchas from a usability point of view. I hate spammers more of course, thus I live by Akismet, but I really think there must be something better than a captcha.

    Congrats on your recent celebrity-status by the way Markus!

  12. Mayo Says:

    Yes Mike!

    That will be probably the way i will go! :)

  13. Marc Says:

    Does anyone know of a practical, proven, somewhat adopted, alternative to captcha?

  14. Ty Says:

    Markus,

    There is currently no commercial program that deciphers the myspace captcha. I imagine there are numerous homebrew solutions out there. If you could shed some light on one of the programs you referenced, i’d like to see it.

  15. analysis Says:

    I think akismet is the future – but only if forum manufacturers start to get with the program. There are one or two akismet plugins out there for hundreds of forums. Our phpBB forum is now useless. One of our IPB forums is under constant attack, even though the average stay of spam notes is about five minutes (empowering LOTS of users to delete spam is a solution not noted in this column).

    I also think one of the big problems is the ease of getting a free disposable e-mail account with which they can verify themselves… and the inability we seem to have to limit hits geographically. In one case, for example, we had to shut down the New Jersey slant six club forums to all newcomers. We’d LOVE to be able to eliminate all IP addresses from outside North America; spam would plummet and we’d lose not a single authentic person. The only problem is that many people who probably shouldn’t apply that solution would start making India, Russia, etc. citizens unable to join in…

  16. Marc Says:

    Akismet seems really cool, I like their antivirus-like approach of having a spam database that you kinda plug into.

  17. Mike Says:

    analysis: Its dead simple to limit new users geographically. Download the free GeoIP database that gives you the originating country/state of an IP. I use it everyday to tell where my sales leads are coming from.

  18. Mr Angry Says:

    The answer is Akismet! I’m glad captchas are dead because they cause as many problems as they solve with usability etc.

  19. vicky Says:

    so what could replace it
    ?

  20. Alex Says:

    The Captcha is dead? Probably, the webmasters keep it in secret, but i see many forum posts where former MySpace spammers look for alternative ways to make money online as they can’t resolve captcha problem.

  21. shelbycockrell Says:

    Gosh, from a users point of view.. the captchas are so crappy, I hate em.

  22. Fucking Spammers! - WickedFire - Internet Marketing Affiliate Webmaster Forum Says:

    [...] Originally Posted by PreZ On multiple forums I own this is becoming a huge problem and all my mods are getting fucking pissed. I wonder whats been fueling this lately. Even with captcha on they are still spamming hard. Maybe someone has a way around captcha now? Could be true. Myspace is having a hard time using their captcha to thwart spam accounts. __________________ The heights by great men reached and kept were not attained by sudden flight, but they while their companions slept, were toiling upward in the night. –Henry Wadsworth Longfellow [...]

  23. whoknows Says:

    acutually a proven effective way of spamming or marketing lol… around captcha’s have been bots that not just merely spam comments or add requests… but also create multiple profiles for use in an automated numbers game… if a captcha stops one profile at 50 requests and you need 500 a day then you obviously need 10 profiles working towards the same goal… and with automated bot logins and requests thats not a drawn out task to accomplish… and with that same formula you can send out thousands and thousands of requests and comments on your product

  24. John Says:

    CAPTCHA bypass is back! FriendBlasterPro has a new 100% working captcha bypass! They released it 3 days ago!!!

    This is their site: addnewfriends.com

    -JW

  25. csharpp Says:

    http://www.captchasolver.com : Did you see it? It’s a CAPTCHA solver web service with API. What do you think about it?

  26. joe Says:

    We dare to be diffrent, No more hassle rebillings,
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    users that never log in are weeded faster than your backyard weedwacker! Meet people,post,chat,upload as you like.
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  27. Glossy Says:

    I think theres a big market for by-passing catcha. So as long as that market is there it will keep getting by-passed so to speak.

  28. Maqeulek Says:

    I have working myspace OCR that I’m currently selling, send me a message on AIM: ReikoFire or ICQ: 53336729 if you’re interested and I’ll show you the demo.

  29. greg Says:

    i payed money for that friendbot program, im not wasting over $60 because of some captcha crap.

    It’s a pain when trying to get your band known when you have to type a random line of letters and numbers every time

  30. dazee Says:

    hmm.. for most commenter here, I think you misleading, the captcha battle is not finished

    you can see here http://byebyecaptcha.com a group make some software to easy bypassing myspace captchas, but of course you need money to buy it, :)

    hmm.. it is right that maybe the market is big, I think

  31. Sumit Says:

    Captcha is dead is a huge overstatement. My thesis research is actually in Captcha and I’ve found that analysis has to be specifically geared towards a specific Captcha. It’s very difficult to make a general, one size fits all solver.

    The popular sites like My-book and Face-space will get hit hard because they are popular and spammers want in. Same with gmail and hotmail. But regular blogs don’t suffer in the same ways. You could put a simple question “what’s the name of this site” and you could instantly deter most spam bots (and stupid people).

  32. Ahsan Says:

    Dear Sir,

    Thanking you and have a nice day. I am very much interested to join online captcha entry & all kind of data entry project.Though I have started this project recently, but I have an experience and dedicated group of workers for performing the job. So i need your help.
    I am ready to start any hugh target if you want . I promise you that I will always give you support as your requirement. Pls give me a chance to join with your job.
    I am waiting for your nice confirmation.
    Best Regards
    Ahsan
    yahoo.messenger :ahsan_0115
    skype :captchaentry
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  33. Florida Title Company Says:

    Nicely said, I enjoy the time that it took to research and write. Great work

  34. Shawn Says:

    Bot programs can read Captcha very easily now a days but companies are still using it, not sure why.

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  39. IPB Paid Themes and Applications Says:

    There’s definately a lot to find out about this subject. I really like all the points you made.

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