Web scam hoodwinks web founding father
Even the inventor of the world wide web isn't immune from online crime.
Sir Tim Berners-Lee, who developed the idea for today's interwebs two decades ago, has told The Telegraph he was recently hoodwinked by a fraudulent website when he went online to buy a Christmas present.
"The moment I called the 0800 number listed on the website, there was a very polite message saying this number is available if you would like to use it, so a little bit of due diligence on my part would have revealed it wasn't what it was set up to be," the British-born professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology told the paper.
He went on to say that internet service providers needed to do more to make sure the net is a safer place for their customers.
"I personally feel that if you have systems that allow you to isolate the infected systems and cut them off until they have been disinfected, it would be a way of preserving service for everyone else," he said. "It would reduce the amount of spam by a huge amount and making the internet a place where viruses don't thrive."
The notion that malware-possessed PCs should be isolated in the cyber equivalent of a padded cell is by no means new. But despite frequent calls for ISPs to rein in abuse on their networks, there's little evidence most providers bother to take such actions.
At the same time, Sir Tim recognized the need for law enforcement agencies throughout the world to work together. International agreements, he said, would help prevent cybercriminals from eluding authorities by hiding in countries outside their jurisdictional reach.
He added: "Sometimes we need new laws, but in other cases we need to realise that old laws can still be applied to the web." ®
Surely the real news here is that Al Gore DIDN'T INVENT THE INTERNET as he claimed! You mean he was lying / stretching the truth / talking out of his rectum? Shocka - that's unusual for a politician, especially a Democrat. Sounds like an inconvenient truth to me..... I wonder if all that global warming malarky he made so much money out of was just as much complete and utter male bovine tecticles?
@ Anomalous Cowherd About spam
"While ISPs allow outbound connections to port 25 this is much easier done from a zombie"
Careful with that kind of thinking mate. My ISP doesn't allow outbound connection to port 25 unless it's to their ill-configured SMTP proxy, and it's a pain in the arse*. It's the cheapo way, but it's stupid and doesn't help much against spam because their system is so very easily fooled.
* quite OK with most of my computers, though their proxy is crap, but it really annoys me to change my laptop's config everytime I change location. Especially as they just silently drop the stuff, so should you forget to make the change you'll never notice that your e-mails were blocked. I know, I could vpn, but seriously?
Deep packet inspection
Come on people! Do you really want your ISP inspecting the payload of every packet you send out to see if it's malware? That's what Phorm were doing and Reg Readers stood up as one and screamed blue murder - rightly IMHO.
@ Ken Hagan
"The problem with using web-based services is that any remotely sane spam filter will rate your messages as 99%-definite spam"
Er, no. Quite the opposite in fact. Gmail uses SPF, so it's easy to determine if mail claiming to be from gmail is forged (I think Yahoo and Hotmail do as well). Yes, it's possible to set up a gmail account and spam from it, but why bother? While ISPs allow outbound connections to port 25 this is much easier done from a zombie, which is in fact where 99% of your spam comes from.