Site is back online

Image result for rainbow memeAfter the problems we’ve had with illicit material (again…), the site is now back online. To get service resumed, we needed to commit to a few changes with our server provider.

While these adjustments are quite small, they do fundamentally change how our service is used by a number of people.

 

What’s different?

  • You now need to register an account to upload images, with a valid email address.
  • We’ve had to block a number of tor exit node IP addresses.
  • Google Vision API is being considered for automated checking of illicit content.

 

We understand that these changes may impact the convenience of quickly uploading an image, however we believe this is a fair price to pay for continued service. Please do leave any comments below if you have any feedback on these changes.

Illegal content again…

Image result for facepalmSo we’re at the same position we were back in late January, server provider has taken us offline because of illegal content being uploaded by some users.

We are pretty much on our last chance and have been given an ultimatum – sort it out or the hosting account will be terminated. This is a big problem for us as Hetzner’s pricing allows us to offer this service on quite a small budget.

We’ve had a positive reaction on twitter from a few users so have made the difficult decision to no longer offer guest uploads. You will now need to register an account with an email address, and validate it, before you are able to upload. I really must stress that this is purely due to the actions of a very small number of users, who have decided their own interests are more important than keeping a service for everyone else.

I’m hoping to bring the site back online in a few hours once I’ve made the necessary code changes to block guest uploads and require email verification. Watch this space!

Child abuse images

I wish I didn’t have to post about this but sadly the actions of some people have forced me to do so.

We have had multiple instances of pictures of child abuse being uploaded to the service. These are the kind of things no business or volunteer-run image hosting website should have to deal with.

Please understand that if you’re using our website to upload child abuse, you are committing a major crime. We will continue deleting the content and blocking the upload IP. If you’re using a Tor exit node, it means you’re cutting off our service to everyone else using that node, for good or for bad. Furthermore, we have also disabled hotlinking from the sites these images are being requested from.

We have logged all accesses to each of the pictures uploaded and will be passing onto the authorities in due course. The content being uploaded is illegal in the strongest possible way and we will do everything in our power to stop it from happening.

Malwarebytes blocking

We were made aware of Malwarebytes blocking our u.cubeupload.com domain due to some dodgy people uploading viruses disguised as images. These images were hotlinked in spam emails.

The security hole which allowed this to happen has been fixed and we’ve requested our domain to be removed from Malwarebytes’ block list, which they have agreed to do.

In due course we will be going through the catalogue of uploaded images to track down any remaining hack files so we can delete them and ban the uploaders.

Thanks for your patience with this problem, I know it has affected a fair number of our users.