I want to thank Office Guy for the article you provided us in the Wishlist forum on spam prevention for vBulletin forums. I was already promoting users to an elevated group that doesn't require Captcha so it wasn't too hard to make further implementations to hopefully prevent some spam. I don't really feel this needs to go public in the forum but I did want to let this group know our efforts because we realize that spam is a hassle at best for those of you who post frequently...
Now users who are new to the forum are not only required to do Captcha but they also don't have the ability to post live links using BB code. Since many of these spammers are just trying to get external links back to their site, this should deter some of them from posting here. I lowered the barrier to promotion to TEN posts - meaning after 10 posts, you become a member and do not see Captcha and can post BB code - because we tend to catch these people and ban them all.
I am told that bots can still get past the whole system and even post links but I am hopeful that this will decrease spam, even if we can't eliminate it.
Thanks again Office Guy and let's cross our fingers for improvement!