Posted by amanda on Thursday 5th March 2015

PHP-Fusion: Prevent Spams With Installing reCaptcha

reCaptcha Prevent Spam PHP-Fusion

If you have set up an e-mail contact form on your website, then it won't take too long before you start getting spam (i.e. unwanted e-mail) in your feedback form. And as time passes by, the bulk of your feedback may contain nothing more but spam. Wondering what has just happened to you? You have become a target of automated scripts called as spambots that constantly search the web to find avenues for sending spam. One such avenue is a contact form that is included in almost every website's contact page.

Fortunately, there is a remarkably useful and easy to implement technique that helps protect your website from spam bots called as a CAPTCHA. It is a simple test that your website visitors need to complete, by entering some weird written words, usually seen in the form of distorted text images before submitting the data. Put it simply, CAPTCHA is a test that helps to tell whether a user is a human or a computer.

However, a recent online research showed that computers can solve even highly complex distorted text. And so, merely using distorted text to figure out a user is a human or a spam bot is no longer the most effective strategy. This is why the reCAPTCHA service was developed. Here I don't mean that CAPTHA won't be used anymore, instead what I meant is that reCAPTCHA will prove a better way to determine whether a user is not a robot.

In essence, reCAPTCHA helps users to easily verify they are human and not robots without the need to solve a CAPTCHA; rather it requires one click for confirming that users are not a robot.

reCAPTCHA can be added to a simple blog, a registration form, etc. in the form of a widget. Drawing parallels between CAPTCHA and reCAPTCHA, is not the agenda of this post. But, we intend to put forth a simple step-by-step process that helps you set up reCAPTCHA within PHP-Fusion security section of the admin panel. Before diving into details about this process, let us first talk about PHP-Fusion.

An Overview of PHP-Fusion

PHP-Fusion is a lightweight content management system (CMS) that is written in PHP4. It's open source in nature, and can be setup and configured easily and quickly. PHP-Fusion CMS contains some features that are commonly found in other CMS packages as well including articles, forums, comments, ratings, and a lot more.

PHP-Fusion comes with a few security settings that are built-in to the CMS. These settings help to prevent spammers from making spam entries. For instance, you can make use of the Captcha settings to keep your website registration form or contact form safe from spam, by adding reCAPTCHA. The best part is that setting up reCAPTCHA within your PHP-Fusion is fairly simple, as it comes integrated within its interface.

NOTE: Prior to setting up reCAPTCHA in the PHP-Fusion admin panel, you'll first have to obtain a key by visiting the page: https://www.google.com/recaptcha/admin#list

How to Add Repcaptcha in PHP-Fusion?

Step 1 – Get logged-in into your PHP-Fusion admin panel.

[caption id="attachment_2296" align="aligncenter" width="730"]Step 1 – Get logged-in into your PHP-Fusion admin panel. Step 1 – Get logged-in into your PHP-Fusion admin panel.[/caption]
Step 2 – Once you've successfully logged-in into the admin panel, you'll see administration options as shown in the screenshot below:

[caption id="attachment_2298" align="aligncenter" width="1272"]Step 2 – Once you've successfully logged-in into the admin panel, you'll see administration options as shown in the screenshot below: Step 2 – Once you've successfully logged-in into the admin panel, you'll see administration options as shown in the screenshot below:
[/caption]

Click on the admin panel link and then on the SETTINGS tab.

Step 3 – Click on the Security icon labeled as “Security” as shown below:

[caption id="attachment_2299" align="aligncenter" width="1315"] Step 3 – Click on the Security icon labeled as “Security” as shown below:
Step 3 – Click on the Security icon labeled as “Security” as shown below:
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Step 4 – From the “Security Settings” window, at the extreme top you'll see a drop-down menu labeled as CAPTCHA. From there, click on the drop-down selection and choose Recaptcha.

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And then, you'll have to paste the Recpatcha Public Key in the field corresponding to the Captcha field. Next, enter the Recaptcha Private Key – that gets generated while creating your Google reCAPTCHA account.

Step 5 – Lastly, click on “SAVE SETTINGS” to save all the entries you have made.

Once you've completed the aforementioned process, reCAPTCHA service will now be added to your PHP-Fusion powered website. For example, the screenshot below shows how the reCAPTCHA service will look like when a new member is registering in your site:

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Final Words

One important thing you should know is that PHP-Fusion make use of Recaptcha mainly for the default contact pages and member registration form. But, in case you want to use it at some other place, then you will have to manually modify the code for the other pages.