The native WordPress commenting system helped millions of bloggers and visitors to ask questions, and get interactions. That helps people well, but when it comes to spammers, you should find a way to make a balance between accepting the good comments and protecting your blog from spammers who post automatic links all the time.
Today, I’ll help you with a free plugin and simple tips and settings to make strong blog protection against spammers and bots. There are many ways to do that, but not all of them will really work. This post will help you, with my own, and other bloggers’ experience.
Before starting to install the plugin, make sure that you have the basic WordPress protection settings, such as, hardening the htaccess file in WordPress, and changing the WordPress login page Url for security. And of course, you need to keep your blog protected from spam comments, using the Akismet tool, in the JetPack plugin from WordPress.
In my experience, Captcha is the most powerful and free plugin that you can download and install from your WordPress dashboard directly. It’s a plugin that will add a math box in the comments posting section.
So, people need to solve a simple equation, such as multiplication, in order to post their comments. You don’t have to worry about adding any CAPTCHA plugin, people know that scammers use advanced technics to post their links on the web. So, they understand that a simple verification process is good for all.
After installing and activating the CAPTCHA plugin, you will find its settings link under the “BWS Plugins” menu, as the next screenshot from the WordPress admin area.
You can enable this plugin in your contact page, comments, and other areas where you need to verify that you get comments from a real human and not bots.
The good part of this amazing plugin is that you can define the complexity level of the tool. If you have a blog with lots of spammers, you can check all the mathematical operations, and it will be hard to get automatic comments from bots. But, you still can’t get 100% protection, simply, because lots of spammers post links manually. They are ready to solve any CAPTCHA and send them there.
The bottom line is that you should use this commenting protection, and make all your comments waiting for moderation. Of course, you need to delete the spam comments later, or simply, let a plugin like WP-Optimize does the work for you, you can schedule automatic spam comments cleaning.
Please make sure that you’ve enabled the comment moderation options in your admin area, you can find them under “Settings”, then, “Discussion”. That page will give more power, to set the way you get comments, and how visitors should submit them.
If you’re using another WordPress commenting system for your blog, make sure to verify that the plugin works well with it. At the same time, don’t go all the way with popular third-party commenting systems like Discus and others.
They have lots of spammers, and you still need to verify comments manually to avoid bad links. Make sure to moderate all your comments, and delete unrelated links that can hurt your ranking, in the long-term.