Alfredo Ramos

hCaptcha extension for phpBB

3 min read

hCaptcha extension for phpBB.

Build Status Latest Stable Version Code Quality Translation Progress License

Adds hCaptcha as a new CAPTCHA plugin for the Spambot countermeasures in the Administration Control Panel.

hCaptcha displays a checkbox similar to reCAPTCHA, but offers enhanced privacy, rewards for challenges, works in countries where Google reCAPTCHA is blocked and it allows website administrator to change the CAPTCHA difficulty through hCaptcha website.


  • Protects user privacy
  • Rewards websites
  • It allows to change the widget theme and size
  • It works on countries where reCAPTCHA is blocked
  • You can change the difficulty of the challenges by site
  • It’s compatible with other extensions that displays CAPTCHAs such as Contact Admin


Spambot countermeasures hCapcha configuration button hCaptcha configuration hCaptcha plugin selection Board registration preview Board registration solving captcha hCaptcha with alternative theme and size Integration with Contact Admin extension

(Click to view in full size)


  • PHP 7.1.3 or greater
  • phpBB 3.3 or greater
  • hCaptcha site key and account secret key


If you like or found my work useful and want to show some appretiation, you can consider donating.


  • Download the latest release
  • Decompress the *.zip or *.tar.gz file
  • Copy the files and directories inside {PHPBB_ROOT}/ext/alfredoramos/hcaptcha/
  • Go to your Administration Control Panel > Customize > Manage extensions
  • Click on Enable and confirm


In order to use hCaptha on your phpBB board, you need to generate a site key and copy your account secret key.

To do so, go to and sign up if you don’t have an account already.

📢 Note: Click on the following images to see them in full size.

Once logged in, go to Sites and add a new site or click on the Settings button.

hCaptcha site key settings

Add a descriptive site name and copy the site key shown.

hCaptcha site key

Further down, you can optionally add your hostnames where you want to show the widget, and change the difficulty of the CAPTCHAs.

hCaptcha Captcha difficulty

Now, you need to go to your account Settings and copy the secret key shown.

hCaptcha account secret key


  • Login to your phpBB Administration Control Panel
  • Go to General > Board configuration > Spambot countermeasures
  • Go to the section Available plugins and choose hCaptcha in the Installed plugins menu
  • Click on the Configure button
  • Paste the site key in the Site key field
  • Paste the account secret key in the Secret key field
  • Optionally choose a theme and size of the generated widget
  • Click on Submit to save the configuration changes


  • Go to your Administration Control Panel > Customize > Manage extensions
  • Click on Disable and confirm
  • Go back to Manage extensions > hCaptcha > Delete data and confirm


  • Go to your Administration Control Panel > Customize > Manage extensions
  • Click on Disable and confirm
  • Delete all the files inside {PHPBB_ROOT}/ext/alfredoramos/hcaptcha/
  • Download the new version
  • Upload the new files inside {PHPBB_ROOT}/ext/alfredoramos/hcaptcha/
  • Enable the extension again