Feeds

Anti-spammers turn guns on each other

All's not fair in love and email abuse

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Top three mobile application threats

It may seem incredible, but those companies set up to prevent the abuse of modern communications (namely, spam) don't seem to be above a bit of active sabotage. How come? All down to money, sadly.

The ongoing war between ORBS, Above.net and MAPS has come to light thanks to Alan Cox's widely read diary (for those that don't know, Alan Cox is a Linux guru, complete with foaming, crazed groupies). Both ORBS and MAPS offer a screening service that cuts out unwanted and unsolicited mail. Above.net is an ISP with two interesting characteristics: one, it is included on ORBS' blacklist of open-relays (which allows spammers to disguise themselves); two, its head, Paul Vixie, runs both Above.net and MAPS.

Alan Cox's entry for 17 July reads: "Under repeated alleged attacks from Paul Vixie's above.net, ORBS has shut down its services - Paul Vixie who just happens to own MAPS which just happens to have ORBS as a notional competitor were he to go commercial, anyone taking bets he does? Due to the amount of spam I get without ORBS filtering, I'm going to be implementing draconian filtering. Basically if you aren't someone who regularly mails me - tough you'll probably never get a reply now."

So what we seem to have here is an ISP, with a vested interest in an anti-spam company planning to go commerical, having a go at another, non-commercial anti-spam company. Looks very messy to us. What's more, it's not terribly hard to see what Above.net is up to. According to observers, it's not even just blocking ORBS packets (presumably to search for a mention of Above.net in its blacklist), it is actually actively counteracting ORBS traffic. This is not a good way of getting the Net community on your side, but then if the idea is to put ORBS out of business, it is having the desired effect.

We deplore blocking terrorism, and in this case, since it isn't even a commercial battle, these tactics would seem very inappropriate. If Above.net is really behind this, we've no doubt the full, hidden force of the Internet will be brought to bear. ®

Links

ORBS' accusations in full
Evidence of MAPS' intention to go commercial

Related stories

Email: spammers, hoaxers, workers, watchers

Top three mobile application threats

More from The Register

next story
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
Audio fans, prepare yourself for the Second Coming ... of Blu-ray
High Fidelity Pure Audio – is this what your ears have been waiting for?
Did a date calculation bug just cost hard-up Co-op Bank £110m?
And just when Brit banking org needs £400m to stay afloat
Sorry London, Europe's top tech city is Munich
New 'Atlas of ICT Activity' finds innovation isn't happening at Silicon Roundabout
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
Apple DOMINATES the Valley, rakes in more profit than Google, HP, Intel, Cisco COMBINED
Cook & Co. also pay more taxes than those four worthies PLUS eBay and Oracle
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a defence for mobile apps
In this whitepaper learn the various considerations for defending mobile applications; from the mobile application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies needed to properly assess mobile applications risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.