Still smarter than most spammers

There's an "Ask Dan" button on all of Aus PC Market product pages, that allows people to ask me stuff about AusPC products, in the hope that I may perhaps answer them and then put the correspondence on my site as an Ask Dan page.

We haven't been able to make it completely clear that this feature is for people asking, for instance, whether Video Card A or Video Card B is better for Fallout 3, rather than stuff I don't know like how long something's power cord is. But even without a How Not To E-Mail Me scare page, by and large the Ask Dan buttons work quite well.

In the last few days, some spambot has latched onto Ask Dan. It's clearly mistaken the send-me-an-e-mail form for a Web-forum comment form, and is attempting to use it to post comment spam.

So now I'm getting mail from and and so on that says stuff like

<a href=|viagra for
woman ></a>
[url=|viagra for
woman][/url] <a href=|viagra price ></a>
[url=|viagra price][/url]
<a href=|viagra generic
></a> [url=|viagra


<a href= >on line casino</a>
[url=]on line casino[/url] <a
href= >no download
casino</a> [url=]no
download casino[/url] <a href= >online casino
[url=]online casino
gambling[/url] <a href=
>casino game online</a>
[url=]casino game

(The above is quite heavily abridged.)

The funny part is that the spambot has decided to post its mis-aimed comments in the Ask Dan form for exactly one AusPC listing, for this defunct server. Because that product is no longer available, the product page now has no Ask Dan button on it; there is no way for anybody to actually navigate to that product's Ask Dan form. And yet, the spambot keeps Asking Dan about it!

So somehow it's gotten it into its tiny little brain that the Ask Dan page for that product - URL, which I just created by pasting the server's product ID in place of the ID of another product - is the gateway to bold new markets for online casinos and pills that probably aren't Viagra.

I hope it doesn't discover any of the thousands of other Ask Dan forms. It's much easier to filter this way!

One Response to “Still smarter than most spammers”

  1. DShpak Says:

    My personal photo gallery site used to have a form that allowed people to comment on every photo (without registering, and without a captcha or anything). A spam bot found it, and added several hundred comments like the ones you describe...but it added them all to the same photo (one photo in the middle of one album). I've turned off the comment feature, but the spambot remains recklessly optimistic, and I still see occasional log entries from its attempts to keep commenting on this one lonely picture.

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