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Contact Form 7 bots protection

Did you know that losing your site to a hacker not only leads to the crisis of getting it back and patching the holes? In fact, the more serious issues are ruined reputation and incoming lawsuits. Which may lead to the end of your career and financial bankruptcy. Leaking your users’ personal information is a serious crime after all. Unless you have a decent attorney, that is. Still, their services aren’t cheap anyway. 

Now when you are frightened enough (if not,  pretend to be for a second, pretty please), what can you do about all of it? Well, it’s such a lucky coincidence that we have preventive answers to, at least a part of potential problems. 

“How the hacking is done and what are the tools of protection at your disposal?”

By all means, the most vulnerable part of your site is where guests can “put” something in it. Contact forms, forums, any other text messaging tool at your disposal can count like that. And if you are not intended to make sure there are actual people interacting with them,  you are at risk of bot attacks. At BEST it can take the form of annoying, but otherwise harmless spam. At worst it can be an attempt at bruteforcing you to get an admin account, or directly use the methods of SQL injection to mess up your database, gain access to it or outright kill it.

Let’s see how you can protect your Contact Form 7 from abuse. 

reCaptcha Solution

The purpose of reCaptcha is to determine whether the visitor of your site is a human being or a bot. It comes in different versions and they work in a slightly manners, some are outright invisible and have a benefit of not irritating your visitors, but they require some management. Others use drills and quizzes to get proof that the visitor is human.

In order to protect your Contact Form 7, we recommend using the reCaptcha by BestWebSoft plugin.

After acquiring both the reCaptcha and the Contact Form 7 plugin, you need to follow the next steps to activate the anti-bot defense.

  1. Go to the reCaptcha settings on your WordPress admin Dashboard and activate the “Contact Form 7” on the External Plugins section. 
recaptcha for contact form settings

2. After that open the Contact > Contact Form page. Create a new form or enter the edit mode.

contact form 7 settings for recaptcha

3. Add the BWS reCaptcha to the necessary line on the Form field.  Click the “Update” button.

reCaptcha badge CF7

4. The appearance of reCaptcha on your site page may vary. For example, if reCaptcha Version 3 is used it will look on a page as follows.

contact form 7 with recaptcha

Now the contact form is protected. The reCaptcha plugin by BestWebSoft offers additional settings like hiding it for certain user roles or managing the Allow/Deny list.

recaptcha wordpress plugin

Captcha Solution

The main differences between reCaptcha and the Сaptcha by BestWebSoft plugin are Captcha does not require linking and managing your Google Account, and the checking procedure takes a more direct approach. 

Like reCaptcha it is compatible with the most popular contact form plugins, Contact Form 7 included.

After installation and configuration of both plugins, you will need to take additional steps

  1. Open the Captcha plugin settings page on Admin Dashboard and enable the Contact Forms 7 on the “External Plugins” section. Then click “Save Changes”
captcha for contact form settings

2. After successfully completing this step, you need to open the Contact > Contact Form page on the Dashboard, open the form in the “Edit Mode” and drag the BWS Captcha badge where you want Captcha to be displayed.

contact form 7 settings for recaptcha

3. For example, the Contact Form 7 with “SlIde Captcha” may look as follows:

contact form 7 with captcha

That’s all you need to do to protect the contact form. Other options can help you to change the appearance and functions of the captcha.

recaptcha wordpress plugin

Conclusion

These are your shields to fight the internet. Pick up the one that suits you the best!



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