About 24 hours ago, I transitioned to a new WordPress version of the site. And in that one day, I have received no less than eight spam comments to my blog — all handily caught by my spam filters — offering me search engine optimization (SEO) services.

If my site is really that hard to find, how is it that these eight spammers found me within 24 hours of its release?

But this incident underscores a very real problem with doing business online. Spam is absolutely everywhere. And though getting your customers to interact with you can be a powerful motivating tool to spur sales and brand loyalty, any text entry point can become a point vulnerable to attack by enemies ranging from the annoying (spam) to the downright dangerous and malicious (hackers).

So here’s some things that you can do to help keep your site secure and spam-free.

  1. Ask your web developer to make certain to “scrub” and validate every piece of data that users send to you, to make certain they can’t steal your vital data through “injection attacks.”
  2. Use a challenge question or “captcha” system like recaptcha. By simply asking your visitors to answer an obvious question, or decipher a slightly distorted image of a word, you can filter out the real humans from the spam-bots.
  3. Use a spam-filtering service like Aksimet. Aksimet automatically scans each comment as it is submitted to your blog, and automatically flags the ones that share too much in common with other spam or scams. In the years that I have been using it, I have found it to be extremely accurate and reliable.
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