What's The Best Anti-Spam Plugin For WordPress?

best Anti-spam Plugin for WordpressSpam bots have become so efficient today that ordinary techniques used for spam protection such as security CAPTCHA, arithmetical problems or puzzles are no more useful when it comes to identifying the bad comments. Spam comments badly harm your blog content and ultimately your search ranking. Majority of blogs which are effected by Google penguin penalty are not serious in moderating the amount of spam links which are poor quality external links inserted through the site's comment form. This seriously harms your blog reputation and you suffer in the long run when it comes to ranking in SERPs.
Just recently I had been struggling hard fighting spam on two of our wordpress blogs. I had been been using Akismet Plugin to filter spam comments on my blogs but Akismet badly fails when it comes to identifying the smart spammers. Spammers who post flattery and cheesy comments such as:
Hi I love your blog content, you have shared some excellent piece of info. Thumbs up!
Hey wow, great article!
Very nice!
and so on
All these comments add no value to your blog content because they are not the least related to the content shared inside the article and make no sense at all. They surely increase your blog load time because every spam comment means that your browser needs to load an extra image avatar of the spammer, user name, email ID, website link and finally load the comment text. All of this info not only increases the work load on the browser but also effects your keyword density. All those off-topic words seriously distracts the attention of search robots from your primary keywords thus killing the essence of your content.
Limitations of Akismet Plugin
Akismet also does not stop spam registrations, subscriptions or contact emails, it is limited to fighting comment spam only to some extent. We needed a more robust, prompt and multi-purpose  anti-spam plugin for our wordpress sites that could not only provide comment spam protection but would also offer us useful options to stop fake registrations, emails and help us block spammers by IP/Email address, "stop words" or country name. A slight research and consultation from fellow bloggers lead me to a trustworthy anti-spam plugin developed by CleanTalk.
CleanTalk Anti-Spam Plugin for Wordpress

After installing the anti-spam plugin by CleanTalk, I was able to replace several different plugins such as Akismet and Captcha Plugins with CleanTalk and get much better results without sacrificing the load time. Not only are our over 4600+ comments scanned and moderated automatically on daily basis but it also helps us fight spam bots signups and contact emails. After seeing the significant improvement it has brought to our site SEO and load time, I thought of sharing this handy anti-spam plugin with all of you. The review today will focus on major features based on which we can conclude why CleanTalk Anti-Spam Plugin is the best WordPress Plugin for spam protection against fake comments, signups, contact emails and much more. 

How CleanTalk Anti-Spam Plugin Works on WordPress?

To determine the spam bots, CleanTalk uses series of tests, invisible to the visitor your website, and also checks if the message relates to the subject of the article or not. This allows providing 99.998% protection from spam bots, and you will not need to install extra protection.
  1. Suppose a visitor writes a comment or registers on your WP site
  2. CleanTalk plugin sends action parameters into the CleanTalk cloud
  3. Service analyzes the parameters
  4. If this is a visitor, the comment will surely be published. If it’s a spam bot, then CleanTalk blocks this comment or registration. That simple!
Parameters are then written to the anti-Spam log which can be viewed in the Control Panel service and users are also informed through weekly email newsletter report.
With such support one can surely turn off protection methods on website that force the user to take certain actions, such as:
  • Questions/answers,
  • Arithmetical problems, etc.
All of these methods are not only easily recognized and bypassed by bots, but also can become irritating for regular visitors.

CleanTalk prevents and automatically blocks Spam

CleanTalk is really efficient in recognizing spam. It automatically detects a spam and blocks it before it could harm your blog load time or SEO, thus allowing you to focus on building quality content instead of wasting precious hours in manually deleting the spam comments. The plugin offers multi-support against spam which includes:
  1. Stops spam comments.
  2. Stops spam registrations.
  3. Stops spam contact emails.
  4. Stops spam orders.
  5. Stops spam bookings.
  6. Stops spam subscriptions.
  7. Stops spam in widgets.
  8. Checks the existing comments for spam.
It's most interesting features include:
  • SpamFireWall: Provides protection against hackers for popular attacks such as XML-RPC brute force, DDoS and more. This option allows to filter spam bots before they access your site. It also reduces CPU usage on hosting server and accelerates pages load time dramatically.
  • Private Black/White lists for IP/email/IP networks - My personal Favorite!
  • Blocking by countries
  • Blocking by "Stop Words".
It also works just perfectly with the following plugins :
  • WordPress, JetPack comments.
  • WooCommerce review form.
  • WordPress Landing Pages.
  • BuddyPress, bbPress, S2Member, WooCommerce registrations.
  • Contact form 7, JetPack Contact form, Formidable forms and so on
CleanTalk is also compatible with WordPress cache plugins
  • W3 Total Cache, Quick Cache, WP Fastest Cache, Hyper Cache, WP Super cache, WP-Rocket and any other cache plugins.

How To Install CleanTalk Anti-Spam Plugin In WordPress?

Follow these easy steps to install CleanTalk Spam protection service on your wordpress blog:
  1. Download CleanTalk Anti-Spam Plugin from wordpress repository. Spam Protection by CleanTalk (no Captcha Anti-Spam) 
  2. Navigate to Plugins > Add New install cleantalk plugin
  3. Click "Upload Plugin" button towards your top-left. upload plugin
  4. Locate the zip file and hit "Install Now" install plugin
  5. Click "Activate Plugin" activate plugin
  6. On the next page in order to enable anti-spam protection, you will need to enter a free access key. Click "Get access key automatically button"
    enter the access key
    You will also receive emails about your account activation. cleanTalk emails
  7. Enable the "SpamFireWall" Option protection is active
  8. Click Advanced settings links at the bottom and enable the following options:
    • Allow spam comments to be automatically deleted upon detection. CleanTalk Advanced Settings
    • Check "collect details about browsers" option CleanTalk Settings for Wordpress 
    You can enable other options such ass SSL and Woocommerce checkout form if you are using them else leave all options as default.
  9. Click "Save Changes" and you are done with the installation!

CleanTalk Dashboard and Spam Analytics

Next Click the link that says "Check comments for spam" from your navbar:
Check Comments for Spam using CleanTalk
This is the result I got:
Spam Comments detected by CleanTalk
All my 4678 comments were instantly scanned and 17 spam comments were detected and removed. Please note that those 17 comments were ignored by Akismet Plugin which I previously used. This shows how effective and accurate CleanTalk is in detecting and blocking spam.
You can also check users for spam to see if any of your co-author or contributor may be misusing the site in any way.

CleanTalk Helps To Block Users By Country/IP/Email

If you click the "CleanTalk Dashboard" link you will see tons of options to moderate your site comments. An AntiSpam log is updated every 3 minutes to inform you about the spam protection activity going on your site. By the time I am writing this article, several spammers from China and Russia have already started attacking my sites with spam contact emails as shown below:

Spam contact emails
AntiSpam log mentions everything about the content being blocked or approved. It will tell you the Author name, email, IP address and also show the content. Clicking the details link will show you the spam content which was posted to my Contact form:

block spam contact emails in wordpress
Clicking the IP address will disclose full identity of the spammer. You can choose to blacklist the spammer by email ID, IP address or even by country name.
IP address of spammer
IP address of spammer
blacklist spammer
The Blacklist option is my personal favorite and helps me block a bulk of spammers at once using the country option. Since my content is in English, people from China and Russia are surely not my intended audience so blocking these countries could surely save me bandwidth and decrease load on servers.
The "Trends" page shows you interesting info using graphical illustration about the total number of blocked and approved/legitimate comments

CleanTalk Trends Report
On the "Spam and legitimate hits" drop down box you can see who were the Top20 spammers on your site for the last week.

Check Top spammers on your site using CleanTalk

Top spammers on wordpress site

Tons of more such features that you can discover for yourselves that not only helps you better moderate your blog but significantly improve its load time and SEO in long run.

How To Signup for CleanTalk Spam Protection?

CleanTalk offers a free trial for 7 days only after which it will start charging $8/year which isn't that much as compared to the quality service it provides for an entire year. I am also greatly impressed by their instant 24/7 free help and customer support. Since I have two sites, I am looking forward to upgrade my plan. Currently $8/year plan best suits our requirements.
Paying for a year of anti-spam service, you save a lot more and receive:
  • Up to 99.998% protection from spam bots.
  • Time and resources saving.
  • More registrations/comments/visitors.
  • Protection of the several websites at once in different CMS.
  • Ease in installation and using.
  • Traffic increase and loyalty to the users.
  • 24/7 technical support.
  • Clear statistics.
  • No captcha (reCaptcha), puzzles, etc.
  • Free mobile app to control anti-spam function on your website.
Additional features
  • Daily and weekly detailed anti-spam reports: traffic VS spam.
  • Apps for iPhone, Android to control anti-spam service, comments, signups, contacts, traffic and spam statistics for the last 7 days.
  • AntiSpam apps for most popular CMS on cleantalk.org.

How Do You Protect Your Sites From Spam?

I am sure spam is a headache for us all. I have shared my experience of Akismet and CleanTalk. Please share your precious views on both of them and have you tried CleanTalk yet?
Can you image how much spam I used to receive through my Wordpress site's contact form alone? See the Gmail screenshot below and imagine how at piece would I be today? =)

Spam in gmail

CleanTalk Anti-Spam Plugin Review
Summary CleanTalk Anti-Spam Plugin is the best WordPress Plugin for spam protection against fake comments, signups, contact emails and much more.
Publisher My Blogger Tricks
Ratings 5/5

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We have Zero Tolerance to Spam. Chessy Comments and Comments with 'Links' will be deleted immediately upon our review.
  1. Nice spam detection plugin. I am a blogspot user and I want to know if there is any tool that can auto remove spam comments in blogspot.

    1. I wish there was one but currently you can moderate blogger comments from your dashboard only with no access to a more advanced anti-spam technique unless you use 3rd party commenting plugins such as Disqus in blogspot

  2. Hello Mustafa bhai,

    No doubt, spam comments on WordPress is the biggest problem for WP users.

    You're right I daily get these types of comments which you've mentioned above. This is what we call "Professional Spamming".

    Thanks for the great plugin. I'll surely gonna try it!

    1. You are always welcomed Samad. I am glad you found CleanTalk plugin useful. Wish you all the best!

  3. Thanks Mustafa, I am just going to launch new WordPress blog so I will try this.

    1. Please let us know about your experience after you use it :)

  4. Hello
    You gave an exceptional information.your article is very informative the way you explain it makes easy to understand.Thnak you...

  5. Hello, sir. You have shared an important and smart article. All the plugins here are very important. I also use an anti-spam plugin in my blog. Thanks for sharing such an important article.

  6. Hi,
    You shared the nice information on this plugin. Thanks for sharing this post.

  7. Thanks for sharing this Anti-Spam Plugin tutorial, really helpful. I am wondering about my wordpress product feed plugin, which one actually good for my ecommerce website.