Home page logo
/

basics logo Security Basics mailing list archives

RE: Sorbs.net DNS Blacklist
From: "Corey Watts-Jones" <cwattsjones () rogers com>
Date: Tue, 14 Mar 2006 11:43:38 -0500

extortion

n 1: an exorbitant charge 2: unjust exaction (as by the misuse of
authority); "the extortion by dishonest officials of fees for performing
their sworn duty" 3: the felonious act of extorting money (as by threats of
violence)

Though the money isn't going to them, denying you service that could cause
the loss of money for your business and asking that funds be sent
*anywhere*, not just to them, counts as unjust exaction and enters into a
really sticky legal realm.

Really though, I just have lots of dirty words to say about anyone that is
that holier-than-thou about anything. :)

Corey


-----Original Message-----
From: Facekhan [mailto:facekhan () gmail com] 
Sent: Friday, March 10, 2006 4:16 PM
To: Dan Denton; security-basics () securityfocus com
Subject: Re: Sorbs.net DNS Blacklist

 I am fairly sure the receiving server does not need to send a bounce 
message out to the sender, just an smtp error code. I think it is either 
a error 553 or 550 to the other mail server. It is the originating mail 
server's job to produce a bounce message for the sender when it receives 
an error code. Standard or not, I think even that functionality is often 
recommended to be disabled so that spammers can't use dictionary attacks 
looking for live addresses and the resulting bounce messages produced 
are more trouble than they are worth for large email systems.

Never used sorbs, but my experience is that roving black list operators 
take an extreme stance towards getting off the list although asking for 
money is a new one on me.  You might just try telling them (think of it 
as social engineering) that you disabled the functionality and see if 
they will take you off the list. Don't pay them, that is clearly 
extortion IMHO. If they won't take you off, you might want to contact 
the other Admin and point out that Sorbs is blocking you for a spurious 
reason and is shaking you down and they may want to cease using that 
blocklist or otherwise whitelist you to continue doing business.

Jason

Dan Denton wrote:

I've got some updated info since the original posting. I spoke by email
with a gent at payments () sorbs net, and was told that the reason we were
blacklisted was that a spammer sent a message from a forged username at
a particular domain. The email hit an address at our server that was no
longer in use, and of course a bounce message was sent back saying the
address doesn't exist. 

Evidently, this response is considered spam in and of itself by
sorbs.net, and that's what got us on the blacklist. Never mind that we
were the ones who got spammed in the first place, and our mail gateway
was only doing what it was supposed to do. I was told that if we ceased
such "harassment", then we would be removed from the blacklist. 

Symantec, who makes our gateway, has it documented on their website that
this feature cannot be disabled, and that such responses are required by
RFC 821. I can see the point. If there's no response to the sender of an
email who accidentally puts a typo in the email address they're sending
to, how the heck would they know if their email reached the correct
party or not? They'd receive no response from a real user, and they'd
probably wonder why they're being ignored. In a business setting, that
behavior could lose you money real quick.

Can anyone please let me know if I'm the one being over-the-top here?
I'd also still like to hear other people's input or experience with
these folks.

-----Original Message-----
From: Dan Denton 
Sent: Thursday, March 09, 2006 9:31 AM
To: security-basics () securityfocus com
Subject: Sorbs.net DNS Blacklist


Does anyone on the list have any prior experience with the folks at
sorbs.net? For the past few weeks a customer who uses a blacklist
supplied by them has had our emails blocked. Previous to this the
company had no problem getting our emails. People at said company want
to receive our emails and are frustrated that they can't receive them
(important stuff like invoices and statements), but their IT admin says
he has no control over the list itself. 

I went to sorbs.net, checked our status using one of their utilities,
and the IP of our mail server shows up on their list. I've even sent in
a request to be removed from the list and have received a ticket number.
In their procedures for delisting, they claim that you must "donate" $50
per email they supposedly received in their spam traps, and the
donations are to be made to 2 charities of their choice. I for one think
this is extortion, regardless of whether the intention is to stop
spammers.

Any background or experience you can share would be appreciated. Thanks
in advance...

Dan Denton

------------------------------------------------------------------------
---
EARN A MASTER OF SCIENCE IN INFORMATION ASSURANCE - ONLINE
The Norwich University program offers unparalleled Infosec management 
education and the case study affords you unmatched consulting
experience. 
Tailor your education to your own professional goals with degree 
customizations including Emergency Management, Business Continuity
Planning, 
Computer Emergency Response Teams, and Digital Investigations. 

http://www.msia.norwich.edu/secfocus
------------------------------------------------------------------------
---


---------------------------------------------------------------------------
EARN A MASTER OF SCIENCE IN INFORMATION ASSURANCE - ONLINE
The Norwich University program offers unparalleled Infosec management 
education and the case study affords you unmatched consulting experience. 
Tailor your education to your own professional goals with degree 
customizations including Emergency Management, Business Continuity
Planning, 
Computer Emergency Response Teams, and Digital Investigations. 

http://www.msia.norwich.edu/secfocus
---------------------------------------------------------------------------


 




---------------------------------------------------------------------------
EARN A MASTER OF SCIENCE IN INFORMATION ASSURANCE - ONLINE
The Norwich University program offers unparalleled Infosec management 
education and the case study affords you unmatched consulting experience. 
Tailor your education to your own professional goals with degree 
customizations including Emergency Management, Business Continuity Planning,

Computer Emergency Response Teams, and Digital Investigations. 

http://www.msia.norwich.edu/secfocus
---------------------------------------------------------------------------




---------------------------------------------------------------------------
EARN A MASTER OF SCIENCE IN INFORMATION ASSURANCE - ONLINE
The Norwich University program offers unparalleled Infosec management 
education and the case study affords you unmatched consulting experience. 
Tailor your education to your own professional goals with degree 
customizations including Emergency Management, Business Continuity Planning, 
Computer Emergency Response Teams, and Digital Investigations. 

http://www.msia.norwich.edu/secfocus
---------------------------------------------------------------------------


  By Date           By Thread  

Current thread:
[ Nmap | Sec Tools | Mailing Lists | Site News | About/Contact | Advertising | Privacy ]