How to add a reCAPTCHA to your Joomla website

This guide will help LCN customers with a Joomla site secure their contact forms, comment sections and other areas of their site with a Google reCAPTCHA to help secure your site from spam and bot abuse.

How to register a site for a reCAPTCHA

Before you start you will first need to set up your site with Google to be able to use a Google reCAPTCHA. You can do this using a Google account and logging into your admin console. You can do this from here.

Once logged in you can now register your site with Google with the following steps:

  1. Enter a Label to help identify the site in the future.
  2. Choose the type of reCAPTCHA you wish to use. You can find out more about the different options here.
  3. Under the Domains section enter your domain name.
  4. Under the Owners section choose the emails of the owners of your site. Your Gmail will already be listed but you can add further emails below it.
  5. Click to Accept the reCAPTCHA Terms of Service and choose if you would like to Send alerts to owners.
  6. Click SUBMIT.
  7. You will now be presented with a SITE KEY and SECRET KEY; you will need these to now activate your captcha on your site. Don’t worry if you close the page, you can get the keys again from the settings page.

Adding your reCAPTCHA to your Joomla site

Now you have your Google reCAPTCHA you can now add it to your site.

Joomla comes with preinstalled plugins for setting up your reCAPTCHA. You may find this to be different for your setup so please check your current setup for plugins and configurations that may have a reCAPTCHA function.

The following steps will show you how to enable a reCAPTCHA on your Joomla sites Global Configuration.

Let’s get started…

  1. Head to your website and get yourself logged in to your Joomla control panel. You can do this by visiting replacing with your domain.
  2. From the top bar click Extensions followed by Plugins.
  3. From the list of plugins look for CAPTCHA. You should find 2 plugins, CAPTCHA – reCAPTCHA and CAPTCHA – Invisible reCAPTCHA. Which one you will need to use will depend on the reCAPTCHA you chose with Google.
  4. Click the plugin you wish to use.
  5. You will be presented with the settings for your plugin, enter your Site Key, and Secret Key in the relevant boxes. Underneath these you will find some additional settings that you can adjust and use as you see fit.
  6. Under Ordering on the right choose the correct CAPTCHA.
  7. On the right-hand side click the red Disabled and select Enabled.
  8. When finished click Save & Close.

Now that you have set up your CAPTCHA you will need it to show in the relevant areas of your site. The following will show you how to set this in your Global Configuration.

  1. From the top bar click System followed by Global Configuration.
  2. From the Site Settings find Default Captcha and choose your CAPTCHA from the drop down.
  3. Click Save & Close.

That’s it! Your reCAPTCHA is now setup and enabled.

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