How to Stop Spam in WordPress Contact Form?

Do you have a lot of spam contact forms in WordPress?

Form abuse and spam are two of the most serious hazards to any website that uses contact forms.  Fortunately, there are solutions to combat contact form spam in WordPress without requiring manual intervention.

We’ll teach you how to utilize several WordPress methods to avoid contact form spam in this blog.

Why Contact Form Spam Is Dangerous?

Contact forms on WordPress have always been obvious targets for malicious spam programs. Spambots can harm your site in a variety of ways by exploiting contact forms:

Submit harmful links: Spambots with nefarious intent can utilize your contact form to send malware-laden links. The malware might infect your entire organization, including your WordPress website if one of your employees clicks on the link.

Denial of Service (DoS): Some bots are really good at filling your forms to their max capability repeatedly. DoS bots are designed to send a huge number of requests to your site in a short amount of time. This may cause your site to slow down, damage the operation of your forms for genuine users, and potentially result in a site outage.

Losses in productivity: Filtering through a significant number of spam entries makes it difficult for your support team to respond quickly to legitimate users. The impact on productivity may harm your brand’s reputation and result in numerous missed conversion opportunities.

These are just a few of the ways spam can wreak havoc on your website.

The good news is that preventing spam from contact forms is quite simple. We’ll show you how to get rid of contact form spam for good using the tools and approaches listed below.

How to Stop Contact Form Spam in WordPress?

1. Install a WordPress Form Plugin with Spam Protection.

Using a plugin with powerful built-in spam protection features is the most crucial step you can take to prevent contact form spam in WordPress. There are many WordPress form plugins available, however many of them lack reliable anti-spam features. We recommend WPForms for the easiest automated spam prevention embedded into your contact form.

anti-spam-protection-forms

Antispam contact form WordPress plugins like Antispam Bee, Akismet, and JetPack can help protect your entire website from spam submissions.

These plugins frequently work independently of your contact forms, shielding your entire site from spam comments and contact form submissions.

They frequently compare form submissions against blacklists of terms, names, and email addresses, and some anti-spam form plugins also assist you in including a CAPTCHA or other anti-spam technology into your form.

2. Add a custom CAPTCHA

Custom CAPTCHAs are another solution for addressing and overcoming spam issues. To accurately submit forms on your website, visitors must answer a customised, word-based code or a random math question.

To progress with adding a remark or submitting a form, users must answer the question or type what they see above the submit button. You can include a number of bespoke word-based questions that visitors can cycle through at random.

CAPTCHAs are efficient against spambots, but they are ineffective against human spammers. Genuine site users who struggle to answer the questions or answer them wrong may find them frustrating and time-consuming.

Custom CAPTCHAs are another solution for addressing and overcoming spam issues. To accurately submit forms on your site, visitors must answer a customized, word-based code or a random math question.

How to implement a CAPTCHA:

You’ll need to choose a service provider to add a CAPTCHA to your website.

The most common CAPTCHA provider is Google, which provides basic functionality to website owners for free. Your options are listed in the Products section of the Google Developers page.

Ensure that you are logged into your Google account. After that, you’ll read a brief overview before selecting Sign up for an API key pair. To finish the procedure, enter in your website information and follow the prompts.

3. Include reCAPTCHA

Third-party spam prevention solutions, such as Google’s reCAPTCHA, are also supported by WPForms.

This is a very effective spam protection strategy, but it takes a little more time to set up than merely allowing form tokens as demonstrated in the previous step.

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wpforms-captcha-recaptcha

There are now three types of reCAPTCHA:

Checkbox reCAPTCHA v2: This version of reCAPTCHA requires a user to click a checkbox to confirm that they are not a bot. You may be requested to take a quick image verification test to verify that you are a real user if suspicious behavior is discovered.

Invisible reCAPTCHA v2: Users don’t see a checkbox at all using invisible reCAPTCHA. This reCAPTCHA solution, on the other hand, analyses user behavior to identify and ban bots.

reCAPTCHA v3: While both of the preceding services can occasionally display an image challenge, reCAPTCHA v3 runs in the background absolutely silently. It’s a sophisticated spam-prevention program, but it can be overly sensitive at times, blocking human users.

4. Use Invisible reCAPTCHA (Aka No CAPTCHA)

Some term this “no CAPTCHA” method because it doesn’t require humans to see it, but it’s simply an unseen reCAPTCHA method.

Visitors to your contact form won’t see any extra fields like a challenge word or math question before they submit it using invisible reCAPTCHA v2. When visitors try to submit the form, the invisible reCAPTCHA v2 kicks in.

Based on your actions, it will complete the submission immediately away if it believes you are human.

If it suspects you’re a bot, it’ll ask you to answer the challenge questions, which are either a checkbox or an image-based question.

5. Use the Honeypot Antispam Method

Another approach for protecting your contact forms against spam is to use honeypots.

It hides a field in your form’s code that is invisible to human visitors but visible to spambots because they are normally looking at the form’s code. These spambots are duped into thinking it’s a legitimate form, so they complete it.

However, your form recognizes this field as a honeypot and rejects all submissions with it filled out (or erroneously filled out, depending on how you’ve set it up).

It boosts your form submission rates and reduces some of the friction that site visitors may feel when they see a challenging question. When people see the Google terms of service badge, which is the only thing they see when you enable this method on your form, they get a comfortable, secure feeling.

The honeypot approach is enabled by default in WPForms, but make sure it’s enabled in your unique form builder’s WordPress settings.

6. Use WordPress Antispam Plugins

You can also utilize antispam plugins to safeguard your entire site from spam entries.

These often work independently of your forms, protecting your site from spam comments and contact form submissions.

Some antispam plugins also allow you to incorporate a CAPTCHA or other antispam method in your contact form, and they check entries against the word, name, and email address blacklists.

Make sure you read the instructions and information before using any of these plugins.

7. Block Copy and Paste in Your Forms

Disabling right-click capabilities on your WordPress site is another approach to safeguard your contact forms from spam.

wpforms-prevent-profanity-paragraph-text

Only human spammers that copy and paste their information into your contact forms will be protected by this strategy. You’ll also be able to prevent content theft from occurring anywhere on your site.

One option is to download and install a plugin like WP Content Copy Protection & No Right Click or Disable Right Click For WP, which disables right-clicking everywhere on your site.

8. IP Address-Based Traffic Blocking

If you notice a lot of spambot activity on your site, you can also ban traffic from such IP addresses to protect your content form. While it adds an extra degree of security to your site, it also has the potential to block legitimate traffic from certain IPs, so use it at your own discretion.

wpforms-settings

Add the IP addresses you want to block to the Comment Blacklist field on your WordPress admin panel’s Discussion settings page. Advanced site owners can do this using a security plugin like Sucuri or their web host’s cPanel.

9. Block Email Addresses of Repeat Spammers

When it comes to filtering human spammers, the email address field can be highly useful. Human spammers can quickly get over CAPTCHA and form tokens, so you’ll need further protection to keep them out.

Blocking questionable email addresses is the way to go when a website receives spam from similar email addresses frequently.

10. Require Email Verification for New Users

Fake emails can be used by real spammers and bots to try to sign up for your website (suppose you allow users to register).

Requiring email verification, which is an extra step that spammers don’t have the patience for, is an easy technique to deter spammers from joining up with phony emails.

We will be happy to hear your thoughts

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