Hold the spam

As I’ve mentioned, I don’t get a ton of spam on Windows Live, but it does happen to me every once in a while. One way I personally combat it is to stay on top of my blog, guestbook, and profile note comments. Typically I check my recent comments every few days, and I can easily see and delete any spam comments (even for older blog posts) that I find there. In case I get busy and forget to check recent comments, I also have Windows Live Alerts configured to notify me via e-mail when I get new comments on my space. 

When I do occasionally find spam lurking amidst my legitimate comments, my process for reporting it is pretty simple:

  1. First open the spammer’s profile (click the user tile, right-click the View Profile link, and click Open in New Tab/New Window) to see the extent of his spamming activities. It’s helpful to open this link in a new tab/window, because when you’re finished reporting the spam, you can just close the tab and resume your activities. While you’re there, copy his profile’s URL (the http://cid.profile.live.com), which you’ll use when filing the report.

  2. Next, scroll to the bottom of the page, and click the Report Abuse link, which directs you to the support page and form for reporting the spammer to the Windows Live team. FYI, the link takes you to forms that collect different kinds of information depending on your context in Windows Live, so you’ll most likely want to use the link at the bottom of the Profile page, as opposed to the one in Groups, Hotmail, or somewhere else.

  3. Make sure that the E-mail Support form has properly captured your name and e-mail address, paste in the profile URL of the spammer, choose Spam as the type of abuse and Comments as the location. In your comments, clearly indicate that the user has posted what you consider to be spam in your blog comments, and request the team look at his profile for further evidence of his activity. Complete the CAPTCHA and click Submit.

  4. Finally, return to the original page and clean the spam off of your blog, notes, guestbook. There’s a handy Delete link below each comment so you can make quick work of it. Remember to report the spammer before you delete the spam; otherwise you’ll have a difficult time finding the offender to report him.

If you follow these important steps, you can ensure that the support team has the information they need to take action. In the end, we’ll help each other by minimizing the impact of spam throughout Windows Live. Feel free to leave your comments below (no spam, please). Wink

– Greg

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8 thoughts on “Hold the spam

  1. I’ve also used screen capturing programs like Jing/Snag-IT to take screenshots of the web address and email them back with these.

  2. A Windows Live Support team member contacted me the other day. He has told me they are working on the situation. We’ve sent several emails back and forth, and he acknowledges that there is a problem with the way spam reports are handled. They just changed things three weeks ago when they added Spam to the pulldown, but they still send the automatic responses. I’ve convinced him that they do NOT need any more info about a spammer than the profile. I’ll be giving updates in the Spam discussion in ATL as they come. Stay tuned. X

  3. I hope Live does something soon about all this spam we’ve been seeing in our blog comments. It’s gotten to the point that I’m hesitating to respond to my email alerts about new post comments because too often it is just span rather than a legitimate comment. Please Live Support fix the problem quickly.

  4. Well, I woke up this morning to the worst spamming I’ve ever received on Windows Live. I must’ve manually deleted almost 100 individual spam comments from my blog posts, dating as far back as 2006. The best comparison I can offer is it’s like having some teenagers roll your house on Halloween night. It’s a huge mess to clean up the next day, but the most important thing is to get it off as quickly as possible. It turns out that two profiles (which I’ve since reported) were responsible for all the tomfoolery.Hey, here’s a couple of follow-up tips to make cleaning large amounts of spam easier. First, use the blog summary view. It allows you to quickly see and delete multiple (spam) comments at once for up to 20 blog posts without a lot of page reloads. Second, on the summary page, expand the comments links from the bottom up, because there’s less scrolling that way. Third, check each comment as you make your way back down the page. Finally, scroll back to the top of the page and click Delete Selected Comments.

  5. One other quick (quicker) was flush out your spam is to log into your blog using the mobile version of Spaces. It makes the process of purging all the junk comments very quick. From reading your blogs for so long I’m sure you were already aware of this little trick.

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