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Re: Why is IRC still around?
From: Mister Coffee <live4java () stormcenter net>
Date: Fri, 19 Nov 2004 12:17:09 -0800

Danny wrote:
Well, it sure does help the anti-virus (anti-malware) and security
consulting business, but besides that... is it not safe to say that:

1) A hell of a lot of viruses/worms/trojans use IRC to wreck further havoc?
And? There are a hell of a lot of "normal" users on IRC too who don't wreck havoc. A lot of spam comes in email. Does that make email bad?

2) A considerable amount of "script kiddies" originate and grow through IRC?
And AIM, ICQ, Jabber, web-forums, mailing lists, etc. IRC is one medium amungst many.

3) A wee bit of software piracy occurs?

Some, perhaps. But unlike, say BitTorrent or Kazaa, IRC's primary role is communication rather than file transfer. You could make the same argument for ANY of the IM clients that support file transfer.

4) That many organized DoS attacks through PC zombies are initiated through IRC?
Many do. Yes. But many also originate through other media, and, again, it's not the medium's fault that people use it for nefarious purposes. Hitmen get calls on their cell phones. Should we eliminate cell phones to stop the hitmen?

5) The anonymity of the whole thing helps to foster all the illegal
and malicious activity that occurs?
The list goes on and on...

Anonymity is not a bad thing in many, man, respects. And the list of legitimate uses goes on and on as well.

Sorry to offend those that use IRC legitimately (LOL - find something
else to chat with your buddies), but why the hell are we not pushing
to sunset IRC?

No offense. But the arguments aren't especially strong. We're not pushing to sunset the IRC protocol because there are still thousands and thousands of -legitimate- users in the world. Unlike most IM systems, the IRC nets are completely independant. There are some serious advantages to that.

What would IT be like today without IRC (or the like)? Am I narrow
minded to say that it would be a much safer place?


IRC is a protocol. A tool like any other. Last I looked there were still hundreds to thousands of IRC users at any given time who were there just to hang out and BS with their friends. It's still a valid "community" if you will, in spite of the nefarious uses other people have put it to.

If you sunset something like IRC, the 3v1L h () X0r3z will just move their bots and trojans somewhere else.



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