How to Bulk Delete Users in WordPress

How to Bulk Delete Users in WordPress

A WordPress site that’s overrun with spam users can be a nightmare to clean up, especially if you’re running BuddyPress.

Spam updates flood your activity stream and dashboard with nonsensical comments (I’m very pleased to uncover this site. I want to to thank you for your time just for this wonderful read!!), and your real users become lost in the chaos.

The spammers’ prime objective is to take control of your WordPress site and drain your server of resources in order to illegally promote other websites. So as soon as you see this happening, it’s a good idea to quickly find and delete any spam users registered on your site.

In today’s Weekend WordPress Project, I’ll show you simple ways to bulk delete spam users.

Bulk Deleting Users

By default, the Users section in the backend of WordPress only displays 20 users. What you may not know is that you can change how many users display at a time using the Screen Options tab, which is located in the top right of the page.

When you click on Screen Option, settings will display, allowing you to change the numbers of users you want to see and which of their details you want to display.

Access the screen options to specify how many users you would like to display.
Access the screen options to specify how many users you would like to display.

You can bulk delete users by adjusting the number displayed to 200 rather than 20. Doing this will allow you to delete several hundred users at a time rather than 20 at a time.

While this is a great method if you only have hundreds of users to delete, you may need to use a plugin to bulk delete users if you have several thousand spamming your site.

One such plugin is the aptly named Bulk Delete, which allows you to delete delete users, posts, pages and meta fields based on different conditions and filters.

If you’re running a Multisite network, Anti-Splog is a great plugin to help bring your splogger count to zero. This powerful plugin – one of ours! – intelligently identifies sploggers and also block them so you don’t have to deal with them in the future. It creates a suspected splog queue for you to review and quickly process in the dashboard. Using the Anti-Splog service will keep them from ever registering again.

WangGuard is another great option that doesn’t require WordPress Multisite in order to work, although it does support networked sites. It provides extra features for managing spam users that have already gotten through the registration process. You can use its built-in wizard to scan your installation for possible spammers and then quickly check all to mark as spam and delete.

Prevention is better than cure, as the saying goes. Installing spam blocking plugins when you launch a site will help stop spam, and ensure you don’t have to deal with being overrun with spam users.

How do you stop spam users on your WordPress site? Tell us in the comments below.