How to protect your website with Google reCaptcha

What is reCAPTCHA?

reCAPTCHA is a free service from Google that helps protect websites from spam and abuse. A “CAPTCHA” is a turing test to tell human and bots apart. It is easy for humans to solve, but hard for “bots” and other malicious software to figure out. By adding reCAPTCHA to a site, you can block automated software while helping your welcome users to enter with ease.

How reCaptcha works?

There are many forms of CAPTCHAs, including an audio version for the visually impaired. But it is the simple variety — the “I’m not a robot” checkbox seen on many of today’s websites.

Google will analyse your behaviour before, during and after clicking the checkbox to determine whether you appear human. This analysis might include everything from your browsing history (malicious bots don’t necessarily watch a few YouTube videos and check their Gmail before signing up for a bank account), to the way you organically move your mouse on the page. If Google is still unsure of your humanness after clicking the checkbox, you will be shown a visual reCAPTCHA (with words, street signs or images) as an additional security measure.

This multi-faceted approach is necessary as computers become more skilled at complex image recognition and with the rise of CAPTCHA sweatshopping.

The reCAPTCHA project provides libraries for various programming languages and applications to make this process easier. reCAPTCHA is a free-of-charge service provided to websites for assistance with the decipherment, but the reCAPTCHA software is not open-source.

Also, reCAPTCHA offers plugins for several web-application platforms including PHP, ASP.NET and Ruby to ease the implementation of the service.

How to get reCaptcha keys?

Using reCAPTCHA on your site is very easy set of actions. First, you need register your website on the Google reCaptcha Admin Console and then follow short on-screen instructions. Just below you can take a look detailed instruction on that process.

Go to the Google reCaptcha Admin Console

1. Click on ‘+’ icon at the top right side

2. Add a label for your new reCaptcha (e.g. name of your website)
3. Select your preferred reCaptcha version
4. Add your website domain name

5. Accept the reCaptcha Terms of Service
6. Submit form and after that you will see the next form where you may get your new SITE/SECRET generated keys.

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