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WLANs As Spam Conduit

chrisd posted more than 11 years ago | from the spammers-are-still-evil dept.

Spam 217

Saint Aardvark writes "According to this article, a honeypot was recently set up on two wireless LANs. 25% of the connections observed were deliberate, and 71% of those were to send spam. Even more reason to take care of your ether." These statistics should be taken with a salt lick...

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217 comments

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Ether? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699005)

That stuff gives me a rush! First Post?

GO AGAINST THE FLOW YOU SPICS (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699203)

You can do that right about here [jesusgeeks.net] . They've been deleting some especially choice posts, though.

Re:GO AGAINST THE FLOW YOU SPICS (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699436)

Oh my god. I was just sitting in a linux channel on irc.openprojects.net when an internet vandal entered and repeatedly posted messages of a homosexual site with the address of http://www.goatse.cx [chick.com] OMG do not follow that link. I am going to need much prayer to cleanse that abominable image from my mind.

and child porn. MUCH child porn.

Whatever you do, do NOT CLICK ON THE LINK ABOVE!!!
Thank you.

Re:GO AGAINST THE FLOW YOU SPICS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699445)

At first i thought that was just a really unfunny humor comic...but then i realized it was serious.

damn there is some fucking gay shit on the interenet.

Re:GO AGAINST THE FLOW YOU SPICS (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699467)

What's even more gay is that they already deleted one similarly worded comment containing that link (mixed with goatse) already.

I guess some things hit a little Too Close to home, eh?

How about... (5, Funny)

ilduce (141065) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699006)

...public vigilante executions of spammers? Kinda like a citizens arrest, but more permenant. Just a thought.

just to be clear... (0, Offtopic)

ilduce (141065) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699021)

Post script on my prior note--
IANAL--
just so you all know. I didn't want anyone to get in trouble or anything...

Re:How about... (2, Funny)

Kj0n (245572) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699413)

What about a flamewar?

With *REAL* flamethrowers, of course!

Please, keep the internet free (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699012)

Block all ports except 80 if you have to... just don't take away my free access!

Re:Please, keep the internet free (2, Insightful)

shadwwulf (145057) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699026)

Even port leaving port 80 isn't safe due to the Form_Mail.pl security issue that is plauging web servers all over and dumping spam into a mail spool near you.

My point is that mearly blocking ports is never the answer, keeping your patches up to date and not running open relays is a simple solution.

My $0.02

Port 80 is Perfectly Safe (3, Informative)

waldoj (8229) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699047)

Even port leaving port 80 isn't safe due to the Form_Mail.pl security issue that is plauging web servers all over and dumping spam into a mail spool near you.

There's no problem with keeping port 80 open. It's running an unsecured web-based non-authenticated mail relay that's the problem.

-Waldo Jaquith

MOD PARENT DOWN: -1, Penniless Hippie (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699033)

How about you actually pay for something in your meaningless life?

Re:MOD PARENT DOWN: -1, Penniless Hippie (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699461)

How about you actually pay for something in your meaningless life?

i paid for YO MOMMA a number of years ago and learned my lesson after that!

tequila (5, Funny)

Entropy_ah (19070) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699015)

These statistics should be taken with a salt lick...
Does spam go well with tequila?

Re:tequila (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699473)

Tequila? Probably. I do know that if you drink enough scotch, the pain caused by spam starts to dull a little...

Re: where? (1)

Anonvnous Coward (664720) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699016)

Makes you wonder where they built the Wireless LAN.

not fp (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699020)

These statistics should be taken with a salt lick...


yuck! I need a drink of water now...Oh you didn't mean we really should lick salt!!!!

Spam on the cell. (5, Informative)

zbowling (597617) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699022)

Spam and telemarketing calls to a persons cell phone (or any system where the person that is being called has to pay for the call) is currently illegal in the states under telecommunications act of 1989. Its the same act that allows us to ask to be put on a company's not calling list and sue if they call back. Do a google for it. Some cool ways to protect yourself using the law.

4 percent? (3, Interesting)

f13nd (555737) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699024)

what about the other 4%... was that accidental?

Re:4 percent? (1, Troll)

Zork the Almighty (599344) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699122)

They were terrorists.

+1 Insightful? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699462)

Maybe funny, but not insightful =P.

Re:4 percent? (1)

DASHSL0T (634167) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699191)

It's 71% of the 25% that were intentional connections.

Re:4 percent? (4, Informative)

eander315 (448340) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699253)

Read that sentence a little closer. It says that 25% of the connections were deliberate, and among those connections, 71% were used for spam. That means that something like 17% of the total connections were used for spam.

The other 75% is the part that is presumably connecting by mistake.

Re:4 percent? (2, Insightful)

edrugtrader (442064) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699255)

how does this get modded up... 25% were deliberate and 71% OF THOSE were used to send spam.

that means 75% were not deliberate.

dental work anyone? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699028)

if you sniff too much ether, you pass out.

Re:dental work anyone? (1)

Ponty (15710) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699263)

And there's a non-trivial chance that you will blow up.

Those stats don't seem that off to me. (1)

Trillan (597339) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699029)

I've read repeatedly that some percentage of all email is spam. I think the number that usually gets thrown around is 40%.

I can't remember the last time I got that much legitimate email...

I really wonder how these stats are gathered.

Re:Those stats don't seem that off to me. (1)

domninus.DDR (582538) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699168)

Well companies that host thier own mail servers and the like ussually dont get that much spam, but there are a lot of yahoo and hotmail accounts (sigh, I have one too) that *ALL* get 7-8 times as much spam as regular mail. If youre wondering what I mean by all... set up a hotmail account with gibberish (no dictionary words) as the name. Dont use it for anything. It only takes 2-3 days to get your first piece of spam. Ive done it 9 or 10 times and the longest it took was 5 days til first spam, and that was longest by far.

Re:Those stats don't seem that off to me. (2, Interesting)

aweraw (557447) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699170)

my 'Inbox' at work is about 10% legitimate e-mail...

60% legitimate mail? to me thats like heaven...

Re:Those stats don't seem that off to me. (1)

russellh (547685) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699414)

60% legitimate mail? to me thats like heaven...

More proof that you don't know what you've got till it's gone....

Re:Those stats don't seem that off to me. (2, Funny)

chunkwhite86 (593696) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699183)

I've read repeatedly that some percentage of all email is spam. I think the number that usually gets thrown around is 40%.

Well that sure as hell isn't my inbox. I'm lucky if one in twenty message is NOT spam.

I really should get some friends though... ;-)

Re:Those stats don't seem that off to me. (2, Interesting)

inaeldi (623679) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699245)

I get about 1 spam message every few days on my main account. I just take very good care of where I use the email address.

My hotmail account on the other hand...

Um...no. (5, Insightful)

waldoj (8229) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699030)

Wait, so this company, "Z/Yen," has determined that 71% of malicious connections to wireless networks are used for sending spam, and they've done so on the strength of setting up a grand total of two WiFi hotspots in one unspecified city (which I assume to be London, because that's where they're located) for an unspecifed time span...and this leads to conclusive results? That's just stupid.

In other news, based on my survey of my apartment, 75% of people are running Mac OS X, and 25% are running Linux.

-Waldo Jaquith

Re:Um...no? (1)

hc000700070007 (664964) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699283)

>75% of people are running Mac OS X, and 25% are >running Linux

that sounds about right... oh wait, it's still 2003!

--hc

Re:Um...no. (5, Funny)

zapatero (68511) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699298)

So two security companies set out to do "research" on WLAN access and the results of their findings conclude that security is needed. These are staggering results. Who woulda guessed.

It's ground breaking research. It ranks up there with Philip Morris' discovery that lung cancer is cuased primarily by cat dander. And McDonald's dietary discovery that low cholesterol leads to depression and suicide.

Re:Um...no. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699326)

In my room right now, 100% of all males are gay.

dlickit (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699036)

dlickit ddlickit dddlickit ddddlickit

DUH! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699037)

And in other news, bathroom walls can be used as a spam conduit.

Clarity (4, Interesting)

John Paul Jones (151355) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699039)

The survey found that almost a quarter of unauthorised connections to the WLANs were intentional, with 71 percent used to send emails.

Umm... First, this means that 75% of the connections were not intentional? Is this the equivalent of 75 people saying they're sorry for stepping on your toes, while 25 people did it on purpose?

Second, define "emails". Is that 10? 10,000?

This seems a bit alarmist.

Re:Clarity (1)

jhunsake (81920) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699111)

75% of the unauthorised connections were not intentional

Re:Clarity (1)

thynk (653762) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699123)

I agree, that's it a little alarmist, however, it kind of sickens me that spammers are now looking for WiFi WAPs to hijack to spam. I ran my wireless open for a couple of weeks, simply because I *KNEW* that none of my neighbors knew a thing about wireless and it's a pretty small neighborhood.

HOWEVER - When I decided to mimic the SSID and WEP settings that we use @ work so I could stop switching them on my PocketPc - I suddinly poped up on my neighbors wireless, since they were broadcasting their SSID. OOPS on my part. I've thought several times about telling them, but money is kind of tight and if I loose my broadband, well, I'm sure they wouldn't mind sharing a little now and then. I wonder if I can bridge via my laptop and move the WHOLE domain over... Hmmmm....

The thought of someone driving up and down my neighborhood looking to break in and spam me with my own connection almost brings me to tears. Heaven help the spammer that I find trying to get into MY network.

Re:Clarity (1)

Ponty (15710) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699273)

Uh, dude, isn't that a little hypocritical? I know you're not spamming your neighbors, but you're still stealing their bandwidth. That's what the spammers are doing.

When I moved into my apartment, I found an open WAP. I started using it and eventually found the guy whose apartment it was. We ended up splitting the cost and it worked out for all of us.

Re:Clarity (1)

panaceaa (205396) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699378)

My guess is 24. It's the first denominator capable of .25 and .71. :)

These statistics should be taken with a salt lick. (0)

Chexsum (583832) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699040)

*neigh*

wha wha ? (1)

ramzak2k (596734) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699043)

"If the proposals come into force, senders of unsolicited emails will require prior consent from recipients, and web users will have to be told if cookies are being used, with the option to reject them. Individuals will also be given more power to decide whether they want to be listed in subscriber directories. "

Although the proposal sounds good whats this big fuzz about cookies ? Sorry for sounding possibly ignorant but since when have cookies become security threat ? If thats the case wouldnt every website face a similar problem with the usage of cookies ?

Re:wha wha ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699073)

A spammer sends you an HTML email. If you preview the email, a cookie is established on the Spammers server.

They know that their email was xx% successful, even though most people just viewed the spam and deleted it right away.

Not only that (1)

autopr0n (534291) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699202)

I've never seen a browser that didn't allow the option of 'prompting' the user for each cookie thats set. Do these guy's want web pages to be reqired to say they use cookies?

One day /. will implode (0, Offtopic)

nickgrieve (87668) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699051)

The PATRIOT act is used to define SPAM as terrorism.

Re:One day /. will implode (3, Insightful)

chunkwhite86 (593696) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699267)

The PATRIOT act is used to define SPAM as terrorism.

I hope so... If we start hunting down spammers with the same tenacity as if they were terrorists... we'd all be better off.

Serious? (5, Insightful)

molrak (541582) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699053)

So let me get this straight. As opposed to just sitting in the apartments or offices or whatever, spammers are now riding around major urban areas trying to find insecure wireless networks? This, to me, would seem to be a tremendous waste of time.

I'll admit, I don't understand why people spam; but the economics of such a thing simply don't seem practicle. The 25% would seem to be about right to me, but that 18% of the total was just for spam, just doesn't seem to add up.

Then again, as Mark Twain said, "There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies and statistics."

Re:Serious? (2, Informative)

John Paul Jones (151355) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699083)

Erm. It was Benjamin Disraeli [clickz.com] , not Sam Clemens.

Re:Serious? (2, Funny)

doorbot.com (184378) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699427)

Then again, as Mark Twain said, "There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies and statistics."

As "they" say, torture the data until it confesses.

america (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699054)

america sucks a cack.

it's orwellian how talk of "democracy" for iraq suddenly disappeared without a trace.

oh you thought they weren't just gonna put in a new puppet?

Lies... (1)

JJahn (657100) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699058)

...damned lies and statistics. strike again

Re:Lies... (1)

localghost (659616) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699249)

What about damned statistics? I think this falls under that category.

These statistics should be taken with a salt lick (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699059)

These statistics should be taken
with a salt lick...


God chris, if you're going to come up with a snotty retort like that, you should back up your argument with some DATA.

These people have published their methodology and results in order to back up their assertions.

What evidence do you have that wireless activity ISN'T being used for illegit activity.

At the very least, even if only 5% of the connections are used to send spam, this article should serve as a reminder: PROTECT YOUR WIRELESS CONNECTIONS!

GOd, there are so many open wireless connections out in the wild. Cover them up people!!!

ChrisD = Bovine (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699164)

hes a fatty! He has to take in salt every so often. It's just good to incorporate his daily routine into /.

ecommerce minister? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699060)

To quote the article "E-commerce minister Stephen Timms says the spread of unsolicited email could damage the development of online business."

Who is the e-commerce minister? Is this some newly appointed official?

Misquote (4, Insightful)

Mattygfunk1 (596840) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699063)

... and 71% of those were to send spam.

The summary misquotes the article here. 71% of the connections sent email - not necessarily spam email. I am surprised the figure wasn't higher.

Anyway it is hardly groundbreaking news that you have to secure wireless internet connections.

_____
cheap web site hosting [cheap-web-...ing.com.au]

Re:Misquote (1)

jhunsake (81920) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699124)

Mod this up. It could have been that none of the emails were spam!

wireless pig ! (1, Troll)

ramzak2k (596734) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699065)

i see a wireless pig icon up there ! Is it just me ? I need some sleep ..

Re:wireless pig ! (0)

smeenz (652345) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699158)

pig => ham => spiced ham => spam

public spots (5, Interesting)

saben78 (527294) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699071)

It's easy for the home and business admin to secure his/her AP. But how do public access places like airports and StarBucks counter drive by spamming?

Any ideas?

Read ^UP^ stupid (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699103)

Duh! [slashdot.org]

Re:Read ^UP^ stupid (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699336)

Blocking all ports but 80 is hardly going to stop spammers from going nuts at Starbucks or other intentionally public WAPs. There are thousands of proxies [openproxies.com] out there which run on port 80 and would be happy to connect you to port 25 on any mail server in the world...

Re:public spots (1)

thynk (653762) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699163)

Drive by spamming, I dont' think I've heard of that one before. See - I do learn something new everyday and it's not always related to pr0n.

Re:public spots (2, Informative)

jratcliffe (208809) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699456)

If memory serves, the service providers (Boingo, T-mobile, etc.) use a client on your PC to authenticate you (probably MAC-based, but I'm not sure). Their concern isn't just security, of course, but making sure that you actually pay for the service.

Oh, take heed! (5, Funny)

interstellar_donkey (200782) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699085)

Remember folks, there are surly looking spammers driving through your surburbian neighborhood right now just looking to abuse your DSL connection through your unsecured access point to send spam.

So if your router gives out a DHCP address in the middle of the night, run outside in your pajamas with a baseball bat. There are spammers you need to teach a lesson.

Re:Oh, take heed! (1)

supz (77173) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699133)

Moderators, please mod the parent comment up!

It would be so great if spammers had to come within a proximity of your home, to send you spam... I'd have an electric fence around my house, with one entrance, and 400 guard dogs.

Re:Oh, take heed! (1)

jamesh (87723) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699300)

yes. 400 dogs. little tiny yappy bitey ones.

and a server that does these things to spammers (eg unknown users sending email):
1. attempt to exploit all known vulnerabilities on their computer.
2. connect to their address book, and forward each email they send to all the addresses in it.
3. if all that fails, pretend to accept their email but don't actually send it.

the above could be covered legally by a TOS statement nailed to your gate (IANAL :)

of course watching 400 little tiny yappy bitey dogs snapping at their toes would be a lot more fun.

Re:Oh, take heed! (2, Funny)

buss_error (142273) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699176)

How long until we see:
Make money FAST crusing your neighborhood! Annoy millions of people with unrelenting spam!

Black crime statistics (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699100)

Blacks murder more than 1,600 whites each year.

Blacks murder whites at 18 times the rate whites murder blacks.

Blacks murdered, raped, robbed, or assaulted about one million whites in 1992.

In the last 30 years, blacks committed 170 million violent and non-violent crimes against whites.

Blacks under 18 are more than 12 times more likely to be arrested for murder than whites under 18.

About 90% of the victims of interracial crimes are white.

Blacks commit 7.5 times more violent interracial crimes than whites, although whites outnumber blacks by 7 to 1.

On a per capita basis, blacks commit 50 times more violent crime than whites.

Black neighborhoods are 35 times more violent than white neighborhoods.

Of the 27 million nonviolent robberies in 1992, 31% (8.4 million) were committed by blacks against whites. Less than 2% were committed by whites against blacks.

Of the 6.6 million violent crimes, 20% (1.3 million) were interracial.

Of the the 1.3 million interracial violent crimes, 90% (1.17 million) are black against white.

In the past 20 years, violent crime increased four times faster than the population.

In the last 30 years (1964-94), more than 45,000 people were killed in interracial murders compared to 38,000 killed in Korea and 58,000 in Vietnam.

In the last 50 years, the white part of the American population has declined from 90% to 72%. The U.S. now has about 33 million blacks and 25 million Hispanics (legal and illegal). By the year 2050, American whites will be a minority, just 49%. By 2100, whites will be 25% of the population.

The White race is 8% of earth's population.

The obvious answer to this is... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699113)

KILL WHITEY!

Re:Black crime statistics (0, Offtopic)

jhunsake (81920) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699136)

Thank god I'll be dead by 2100.

Re:Black crime statistics (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699295)

This shit is insightful, we'll all be dead by 2100!

Salt lick (1)

jhunsake (81920) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699102)

What if there were only 2 unauthorized connections? What a story!

Get-rich-quick scheme (4, Funny)

xintegerx (557455) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699114)

I just received in e-mail..

1) Sue for "Cable Theft" (if cable ISP)

2) Sue for "Denial of Service Attack" (since the intent of spam is to fill up your mailbox, causing you to give up real e-mails.)

3) Sue for "Espionage" if you both received a 'viagra' spamvertisement and the e-mail says it's not commercial spam, because if it's non-commercial, they were watching you through a window and wanted to notify you of viagra!

4) Is the spam for an ergonomic peripheral, like mouse or keyboard or computer chair? Or maybe, the company offers you pills to decrease your hormonones? In either case, this means they think you might have repetitive stress syndrome from using your... tool. This is either "Espionage" (they saw it), or "Intent of Deliberate Harm" (they e-mail you so much shit, they KNOW you are guaranteed to have RSS in your wrists....

5) ???

6) Profit

Bad logic. (4, Insightful)

twitter (104583) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699116)

Huh? What statistics? Where was this thing set up? How many hits did they record, 4? Did they deliver the spam? Was the welcome message, "Tell all your leet friends about the spam relay here!" Is someone at the RSA office the type that thinks they can make a fast buck selling dick enlargers? F+

The study, as presented is useless except to divide people. They might have just as well said that the internet itself was evil for enabling spam. I can say the same thing about materials used to make billboards. The RSA says, "Don't share, people." Great!

You arent kidding (3, Insightful)

t0ny (590331) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699119)

so that means that, citing their statistics, at least 30% of people have closet spammers living near them. Ya right!

I mean, Im sure most people living near me wouldnt mind downloading pr0n with my connection, but sending spam? Even if they had said hacking I would consider that a stretch. Its not like every kiddy is a script kiddy.

Re:You arent kidding (1)

t0ny (590331) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699132)

Oops, I realized I fuxored the numbers. Its more like 18%, not 30%

Re:You arent kidding (1)

claud9999 (412067) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699457)

Well, spammers have to live near someone, and they sure as hell don't live near me so they must live near you! Just kidding.

Seriously though, with spammers hiring college students (and surely housewives and others looking to "make $ from home") for one-off spams, I would not be suprised if the odds of having someone spam from your WLAN is going to be proportional to the amount of time you remain open.

Newsfactor is silly (1)

fname (199759) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699139)

I occasionally read a NewsFactor article by accident. They define silly. They are usually speculation couched as fact, and prove little except that if you pay Yahoo! enough, they will carry your stories on their news site.

Well.. duh.. but seriously, it's wild out there. (3, Insightful)

smeenz (652345) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699141)

The finding doesn't surpise me much. As far as I'm concerned, a wireless lan should be considered at least as dangerous as your internet connection, and should be firewalled appropriately. What makes them more dangerous is that it's like having your users sit in your DMZ.. their laptops with wireless cards can be wide open and they don't have a clue. I guess it's just like when those users use a dialup modem account without a firewall, but because they're often connected to the corporate network via a vpn etc, they believe they are somehow more secure. They might well have a ipsec or mppe vpn active, but that doesn't usually stop windows from listening on ports 137/138/445. And how many windows users do you really think are going to run a 'personal' firewall and/or understand what they've got themselves into by going wireless.

Chrisd (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699145)

Why should it be taken with a salt lick fatty?

Intelligence (3, Funny)

rf0 (159958) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699178)

This is showing spammers are intelligent and learning. That can't be right can it? :)

Rus

sounds like shit to me... (2, Interesting)

drwho (4190) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699272)

I've had an access point with public access set up in the middle of a major city for several years now, and have never seen a SINGLE spam attempt. As much as I hate spammers, I think this 'warning' is just hype.

Not that I buy the figures, but... (1)

Bruce Perens (3872) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699307)

I don't buy these figures. But I've thought about blocking off port 25 to unregistered hosts on my local net. That's all that would be necessary.

Bruce

Counterplot (2, Funny)

Julian Morrison (5575) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699312)

Wireless spam? I'm thinking that's not necessarily such a bad thing. (1) wireless broadcasting objects are locatable in 3D using the proper detection tools (2) a wireless enabled laptop is deliberately radio-permeable and structured so as to pick up radio energy.

Solution: directional high powered radio emitters on the 802.11b wavelength. Target the suckas and zap the bejeezus out of 'em.

Mmmm, fried spam.

Sounds familiar (3, Informative)

gmajor (514414) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699316)

For a class I took, a professor set up a temporary mail server that we needed to use for an assignment. He of course took precautions, making sure mail was only routed to a certain domain.

But within 48 hours, the mail server was found by spammers!

He even had a great idea for anti-spam software/blocking. Set up these honeypots in different geographical locations, but don't publish the addresses; let the spammers find them. Have them accept mail as if they would route it, but do not actually send it out. We can assume any e-mails received are spam. Make a collection of spam e-mails, and have filters block out mail that closely matches all the mails the honeypots have received.

E-mail or spam? (2, Insightful)

stuartkahler (569400) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699319)

It didn't clearly state whether they checked if the unauthorized connections were actually sending bulk e-mail (spam), or just normal users using the open net connection to send out their e-mail. I could see people writing e-mails and saving them for when they happen by an open wlan.

Do any e-mail programs automatically send out pending messages as soon as a network connection is detected?

Re:E-mail or spam? (0)

indiancowboy (637150) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699430)

good point. And yes there are clients which would do that.

The good news is.... (0)

Lord_Dweomer (648696) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699329)

that maybe these spammers will have to do some driving and the cost of gas will turn spamming from a virtually all-profit run to one where if they don't hook a certain number of suckers, the gas cost will make them LOSE money.

Eh, it'd never happen, but wishful thinking never hurt anybody.

Reason doesn't matter if the connection isnt legit (1)

Zeddicus_Z (214454) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699366)

If a connection to your AP is not a legitimate, authorised connection (i.e. one made by the people the AP/wireless connectivitiy was put in place for), it doesn't matter what the reason for the connection.

Saying that 71% of all unauthorised Wireless access attempts are attempts at spamming is nothing more than a useless statistic. If you have Wireless in place and have not properly secured it (Mac lists/VPN/VPN endpoint in DMZ), then you've got bigger problems than your local Wiget reseller using bandwidth you paid for, to annoy a few million people.

Poorly written article (1)

mharris007 (142886) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699367)

I think this is a poorly written article, and it doesn't nearly go in to the subject at the depths it should.

I would like to know in what sort of area did they set up these WLAN honeypots? I'm going to assume it was probably in a large meteropolitan area. Also, I would like to know how the hackers so easily found the WLANs mail server once inside the network. There are a bunch of questions this article leaves unanswered in my mind. I would like to see them report more information than what they did.

As a previous poster said, take this with a grain of salt (or salt lick).

Re:Poorly written article (1)

dbCooper0 (398528) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699384)

I prefer a shaker of salt, as opposed to a grain.

This is really silly post! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5699390)

They cant blame the medium (WLAN i.e.) because people send spam from it. Its like blaming the telecommunication industry (AT&T et al) for the tele-marketiers phone calls. You wanna prevent spamming just block any kinda SMTP traffic, any standard filewall will do it for you (which I assume you will be running anyway if u'er opening up your network to the world).

This is a real silly post! (-1, Redundant)

indiancowboy (637150) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699406)

How can they blame the medium (WLAN i.e.) because people send spam from it? Its like blaming the tele-communication industry (AT&T et al) for the tele-marketiers phone calls. You wanna prevent spamming just block any kinda SMTP traffic, any standard filewall will do it for you (which I assume you will be running anyway if u'er opening up your network to the world).

Idea (2, Funny)

use_compress (627082) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699417)

Step 1: Purchase private island Step 2: Make private island autonomous country Step 3: Cover island with free Wifi Step 4: Implement secret anti-spam laws with Singapore-style penalties Step 5: Wait for spammers to come

I would like to call BS (2, Interesting)

La Camiseta (59684) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699423)

Ok, I admit it, I do tend to go out front of other's places and use their wireless connections. And yes, most of the time it's for email. But you have to realize that just because you're sending out a dozen or so emails, it doesn't mean that it's spam. I like to use my email client in offline mode, and so I kind of "save up" the emails to send later, and then send them all at once. It's not spam, it's just communication.

solution: (0)

scourfish (573542) | more than 11 years ago | (#5699477)

Presidential pardons for anybody who kills a known spammer in cold blood
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