I have been looking for a decent CAPTCHA (for Completely Automated Turing Test To Tell Computers and Humans Apart) system lately, in order to better protect my and my client’s contact forms from spam. There is a wide variety to choose from – various PHP solutions, to hidden CSS fields. Not quite satisfied with any of the options (many have validation issues and large databases full of rotating graphics) I turned to a more and more familar site online: reCAPTCHA.
reCAPTCHA is an online initiative that combines developer’s efforts to protect contact forms with an attempt to more easily digitize books. “About 60 million CAPTCHAs are solved by humans around the world every day. In each case, roughly ten seconds of human time are being spent. Individually, that’s not a lot of time, but in aggregate these little puzzles consume more than 150,000 hours of work each day. What if we could make positive use of this human effort? reCAPTCHA does exactly that by channeling the effort spent solving CAPTCHAs online into “reading” books.”
Pretty sweet, huh?
Read more about reCAPTCHA’s efforts here and sign up for an account. It is FREE and easy to set-up – you just need a little PHP knowledge for most programs, but it supports WordPress, MediaWiki and more. If you need some assistance with the PHP set-up, here is a good tutorial.