Terry Zink's Cyber Security Blog

Discussing Internet security in (mostly) plain English

June, 2009

  • Terry Zink's Cyber Security Blog

    My take on blacklists - what's known, what's misunderstood and what's too good to be true

    • 1 Comments
    One of the stories that is circulating around the Internet this week is the announced imminent closure of the SORBS blocklist.  Al Iverson of SpamResource has a good summary of it.  SORBS has had its share of criticism in the past, however. ...
  • Terry Zink's Cyber Security Blog

    Craigslist has some new security measures

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    A few months ago, I put up an ad on Craiglist advertising something of mine (I can’t remember what it was).  It was easy, all I had to do was click on a few links, put in the description, fill in my email address and hit Post.  No muss or fuss...
  • Terry Zink's Cyber Security Blog

    Microsoft's new search engine: Bing

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    Microsoft has just released a new search engine entitled Bing (but it's not Google).  The philosophy behind it is something that Bill Gates has talked about for a long time.  Today, Search returns a lot of results (regardless of whether it's...
  • Terry Zink's Cyber Security Blog

    Alan Ralsky pleads guilty to stock fraud

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    In a story by PC World, spam kingpin Alan Ralsky has plead guilty to a stock fraud case where he pumped up Chinese penny stocks: Ralsky and four other individuals pleaded guilty on Monday, joining three others who had pleaded guilty earlier, the U.S....
  • Terry Zink's Cyber Security Blog

    My take on blacklists, part 2

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    I'm going to attempt to summarize a blocklist without going to the article on Wikipedia.  I'll be doing this straight off the top of my head. Motivation A blocklist is essentially a shortcut to spam filtering.  Assume that you have a content...
  • Terry Zink's Cyber Security Blog

    Is Twitter spam possible?

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    With the explosion in popularity of Twitter (of which I am not a twitterer or even a subscriber), I've wondered to myself whether there is such a thing as twitter spam. Now, spam in the email sense is when spammers flood your inbox with unwanted email...
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    The Council of Elrond

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    A couple of weeks ago, the Financial Times ran an article entitled "Secret War on Web Crooks Revealed."  Here's an excerpt: The people who run the world's internet systems are a rather secretive bunch.  Three times a year, senior technical...
  • Terry Zink's Cyber Security Blog

    Anatomy of a spam

    • 1 Comments
    The other day, I got the following spam message in my inbox (junk mail folder, actually): miaou skoal. ripe fanny hash tome? hypo kirk. griff trow canoe kirk. fix die dance. fix coach born hazy? silky brier mutt wrest. samp cad wrest adopt? ahoy pest...
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    FTC takes down another command-and-control center

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    We all remember back in November 2008, the botnet command-and-control center hosting ISP McColo was taken offline.  Overnight, spam levels dropped by 40%.  It was one of the most significant antispam operations in the history of fighting spam...
  • Terry Zink's Cyber Security Blog

    Click Fraud

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    The New York Times ran an article yesterday saying that Microsoft is suing three people in a click-fraud scheme.  The investigation took more than a year and the company is seeking $750k in damages. Click Fraud is when people manipulate clicks on...
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    More on Click Fraud

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    I have a bit more on my previous post about Click Fraud. To me, Click Fraud is much riskier than spamming.  Consider the differences: with spam, the spammer is spreading out abusive content all across the internet and each user only gets a small...
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    Finally, a phish that makes sense to me

    • 3 Comments
    Today, for the first time every, I got a phishing spam from a spammer targeting a bank that I actually use.  A couple of months ago, Washington Mutual held a "contest" where if you opened an account and put at least $100, they'd also contribute...
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