2006-08-21

Was the forum hacked?

Concerning the graph in my post from yesterday, i said i would provide an answer. Part of it will be speculation, but i accept any comment or critics!
The red curve represents the average new forum users in a particular month! There are two months that were very popular ;-) : September 2005 and June 2006. When i saw these jumps, i thought "something wrong". So i searched in that period for strange patterns in the new forum names. I also looked at March 2006.
The blue curve and peaks are the number of new forum users of particular days.
My conclusions were:
  1. 5000 new usernames on September 6, 2005 by somebody who wrote an automatic script!
  2. first days of March 2006: no explanation! Perhaps a normal increase?
  3. around June 3, some days like September 6, but a bit cleverer ;-)
  4. between June 26 and July 1, same as above!
  5. August 16 and the days after is the new forum "effect": new users plus the old users who have to create a new user account. Understandable but weird (for the old users!).
Why these conclusions? Well below you have a screenshot of some usernames registered on September 6, 2005!!!! Like i said above, there were about 5000 similar names! I don't believe Skype was playing around with its own forum!

Why are the peaks "3 and 4" cleverer? See the screenshot below! I wil give an answer in the coming days, but would love to have some people make a guess!
(I know this is a dirty trick to make you come back to my blog ;-)

2 comments:

Ike Roelfsema said...

Jean,

Sometimes there are out of the blue a huge number of true SPAMMERS. This can be on a certain day or days.
All these SPAMMERS get blocked where their names remain on the forums though with 0 posts.
Although I can't recall the dates, we definitely had strange peaks. We even joked that the hot weather caused it...

Jean Mercier said...

OK, i understand this. But i am sure the forum user [ www.ahg-forum.com ]6293 and all the similar colleagues didn't make any post.

From your comment i guess that, with the word spammer, you mean those people who posted repeated or commercial stuff on the forum.

But, indeed, i forgot that when you remove posts, you also remove the message, and that therefore the counter stands on zero!