Telia blocks spam-sending Zombie PCs

Tuesday, 4 November 2003, 6:51 PM EST

TeliaSonera, the leading telecommunications group in the Nordic and Baltic regions, will start to immediately block Internet traffic to and from computers that send junk email or spam, the company announced yesterday.

In order to prevent the rapid spread of spam and virus mails, the company will block all Trojan-infected PCs without warning. TeliaSoneria is the first ISP in Europe to take such drastic measures.

So far, most ISPs have only blocked Internet traffic to certain PC ports. In the UK NTL last month started blocking port 135 traffic on its Internet service. Port 135 is generally used for connections to Microsoft Exchange servers on corporate networks, but it was also compromised by the Welchia and Blaster worms.

A PC that is infected with a Trojan can send more than 100,000 spam messages or viruses in a single day. A time lapse of two weeks between the discovery and blocking of computers that send spam is therefore no longer acceptable, TeliaSoneria says. The company emphasises that it is not blocking computers on a permanent basis. Telia will offer assistance to solve the problem and then remove the blocking procedure afterwards.

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