Obtaining an Akismet API key and activating the Akismet plugin

Akismet is a spam filtering service by Automattic, the same folks who develop WordPress. Learn more about stopping comment spam and how Akismet works.

This article describes how to:

  1. Obtain an Akismet API key
  2. Activate the Akismet plugin in your WordPress site

Obtain an Akismet API key

The first step is to get a WordPress key from Akismet. Go to www.akismet.com/plans/ in your web browser. Select a plan and you’ll be prompted to signup for Akismet with a WordPress.com account.

Signup with WordPress.com

Signup or login with WordPress.com

A WordPress.com account is different from your own user account for your website. A WordPress.com account gives you access to Akismet and other related services by it’s parent company, Automattic, e.g. Gravatar, Polldaddy and Jetpack. Learn more.

If you have one, click the link at the top of the page that says “I already have a WordPress.com account!” Otherwise, signup for a WordPress.com account to use Akismet. Look for registration confirmation emails from wordpress.com and follow the instructions to activate your account for Akismet.

If you would only like a free account, select the Personal plan ($0-$120/yr) and drag the yearly contribution slider to $0. Your screen should look like the image below.

Sign up for a free plan at Akismet.com

Once you’ve completed the signup process, login to your Akismet account. Under the Account Overview section, click Reveal to display your API key which looks like a string of numbers and letters. Highlight the API key and copy it.

Copy your API key

Now go back to your WordPress admin. If you haven’t already, activate the Akismet plugin. You’ll see the Akismet is almost ready message at the top of the screen.

Navigate to Plugins → Akismet Configuration. You’ll see the screen below.

Save the API key into the Akismet settings screen.

Paste the API key into the text field. You can also select the 2 checkboxes below if you like. Click Update options.

Congratulations, your site is now protected from comment spam by Akismet.