19

I think there is a way to circumvent a suspension. I don't know if it's a bug or by design. A week ago on Travel.SE, a user was suspended for 90 days, and thereupon he decided to delete his account on Travel.SE.

Yesterday the same user signed up again on Travel.SE, and all his questions, answers, reputation and almost all badges were restored; only the votes and review audits were not restored, and...he wasn't suspended anymore. I informed our moderators, and he was suspended again, but on a site with many more users like Stack Overflow or Super User, it's almost impossible to check that.

  • Suspension bypass vulnerability, eh? – devnull Mar 5 '14 at 8:42
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    Well, now he got suspended for a full year. :) – ShaWiz Mar 5 '14 at 8:43
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    Just to be clear - the user wasn't doing anything sneaky or underhanded, this was a perfect storm created by a series of unfortunate mistakes. Please, don't feel compelled to dig through things more than they have been - thanks all :) – Tim Post Mar 5 '14 at 9:00
20

It's not possible to circumvent a suspension. I can't go into details of that specific account, as the issue is being handled privately. It surrounds an account removal that was made in error, due to a series of unfortunate mistakes which we've attributed directly to holes in annotations the system makes during the new account removal countdown process.

The user's posts were re-associated with an account that he created after his original was deleted by mistake, which is specifically what we reserve that process to fulfill these days.

All of this took place while we were in direct contact with the user, and the site moderators. I can't really explain more other than to reiterate:

  • Account removal and suspension proceedings are private, beyond the terse reason we provide on the profile page
  • Suspensions can't be circumvented
  • This was a fluke that is unlikely to ever happen again, but we're putting changes in the pipe to ensure it.

tl;dr - nothing more to see here, move along ... move along.

  • 7
    Of course it is possible to circumvent a suspension - all you have to do is – BoltClock's a Unicorn Mar 5 '14 at 9:47
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    @BoltClock'saUnicorn Knows - he's technically been suspended for years. – Tim Post Mar 5 '14 at 10:37

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