Stop Spam Subscriber Accounts Registering on WordPress

anti_spam_wordpress_users

anti_spam_wordpress_users

If you have been getting a bunch of unwanted new user registrations on your WordPress website and are wondering what they are and where they are coming from, with such bogus email addresses mostly from the gmail.com domain like [email protected] it’s just a bunch of automated spam, do not fear, here’s what to do!

Spambots trawling through the net seeing where they can get access and leave spam for a number of purposes. In WordPress you can see if you have registration to your site enabled by checking http://www.yourdomain.com/wp-login.php and if you have “Registration” below the login then anyone can subscribe and as long as you have the default level set on the lowest “Subscriber” nothing bad is going to happen.

WordPress ships with the default level in this setting set to Subscriber and the user has very limited access to the site. But I would rather be giving no access.

wordpress-spam-users-register

wordpress-spam-users-register

To turn this off go to WordPress Dashboard > Settings >  Settings > Membership and uncheck “Anyone Can Register”.

This will stop spam users setting up fake accounts saving you a lot of admin deleting time.

uncheck-member-subcribe-wordpress

uncheck-member-subcribe-wordpress

 

If you do have a load of bogus users to delete you can speed up the process by increasing the amount of users you can see on screen and then to a mass delete. By changing the screen options and upping the number – 999 is the maximum, if your server can handle it – otherwise try 300 at a time.

delete-mass-users-wordpress

delete-mass-users-wordpress

 

If you do want to keep legitimate subscribers consider a plug-in like Subscribe2

Using a Captcha to Avoid Spam

If you need to keep the registration process active on your site consider using a less intrusive captcha such as Math Captcha, this shows the use a simple math formula to solve as appose to a blurry image to read from.

wordpress-spam-register-captcha

It’s a bit more easy on the eye.

6 Comments

  1. Bhavin on April 8, 2018 at 6:09 am

    Thanks for your good trick about wordpress

  2. Sikap Mental Positif Training on June 7, 2016 at 3:33 am

    I hope there is no longer register as a subscriber on my website since I follow the tutorial above, thanks

  3. mike on April 13, 2016 at 1:08 pm

    Thanks for the info. I need your help, does it effects search engine rankings when we receive SPAM user registrations?

    Looking forwarded for reply .

  4. Andrew Norton on February 21, 2012 at 9:55 pm

    Thank you for posting this helpful advice. I can now stop thousands of unwanted emails and take comfort in knowing spammers are locked out of my website. Cheers

  5. Alicia Castillo Holl on January 26, 2012 at 4:22 pm

    You are… coolest guy :-)   thanks for posting this!

  6. Grateful Guest Poster on January 4, 2012 at 4:34 pm

    You are a wonderful, worthy, precious member of the human race for posting this!  I get about 20 registrations from people I’ve never heard of every day.  You’ve saved me from a life of tedium.  Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you.  

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