[Dshield] PDF Spam Wave

Freddie Sorensen freddie at parawebic.com
Fri Aug 10 14:20:08 GMT 2007

Domains are not blacklisted - IP addresses are blacklisted

	-------- Original Nachricht --------
	Von: Chuck Rothauser [mailto:chuckr at keywestkeys.com]
	Gesendet: 10.08.2007 14:52:20
	An: "General DShield Discussion List" <list at lists.dshield.org>; 
	Betreff: Re: [Dshield] PDF Spam Wave
	Still worse,
	Spammers find smtp mailrelays and use legitimate domains which
then causes
	the legitimate domain to be black listed........no fun trying to
get your
	domain "unlisted"......
	---> Chuck
	----- Original Message -----
	From: "Cefiar"
	Sent: Friday, August 10, 2007 2:16 AM
	Subject: Re: [Dshield] PDF Spam Wave
	> On Tuesday 07 August 2007 19:55:35 jayjwa wrote:
	>> *this* PDF spam:
	>> 1. Spammer connects to large.email.provider (no http-to-smtp
	>> submits email w/PDF attachment spoofed as
	>> (random-made-up-user)@certain.domain
	>> 2. Spammer sends email to non-existing user,
	>> (random)@(random-but-real-domain). So now we have fake mail
going to
	>> non-existing user.
	>> 3. All of the (random-but-real-domain)s now receive mail to
the correct
	>> domain, but to a user that _does not exist_ or cannot receive
mail for
	>> some
	>> other reason.
	>> 4. They reject this. How is this *not* correct behavior?
	>> 5. Now certain.domain gets this "bounce". Only it's not a
real bounce
	>> because certain.domain _never sent anything or handled any
	>> 6. "Bounce" (remember, certain.domain did not send anything
to begin
	>> with)
	>> is labeled to (random)@certain.domain. Obviously, (random)
does not
	>> exist.
	>> What to do with mail to a user that does not exist? Do you
see the cycle
	>> here?
	> ...And unfortunately I've seen this for well over 7 years, and
in many
	> cases
	> my own personal and work addresses have been the destinations.
Then it
	> migrated well over 5 years ago to a combination of random
	> addresses pulled from address books and off mailing lists, and
	> versions of the same. Ever seen mail aimed at a user called
	> Welcome
	> to a corrupted "majordomo" email address. I've even got email
directed at
	> "r"
	> and "o" on the same machine.
	>> To make matters worse, multiply the above by the 10,000 or so
	>> the
	>> spam run seemed to generate, and also the fact that some
mailservers kept
	>> trying to re-deliver even after the transaction was 550'ed.
	>> "certain.domain" happened to be one of my intranet hosts. The
	>> sensible
	>> thing I could come up with that ended mail to no one looping
around in
	>> circles was eating these fake bounces at the door, which it
	>> towards
	>> the bottom of my original post.
	> In many of the above cases (eg: "rdomo"), I simply created an
alias and
	> fed
	> the mail directly into things like spamassassin's learning
	> especially
	> when I was "sure" the address was bogus.
	>> Moreover, this spam operated more like an email virus, in
that I don't
	>> think it would be wise to bounce them, but rather sink them.
The only
	>> place
	>> all these spam could end would be in the mailbox of a
postmaster, which
	>> seemed to me a pretty worthless spam run (as no end-users
ever got any
	>> messages). Why someone would initiate such a spam run was one
of the
	>> things
	>> I was hoping to find out. If it was Joe-Job, as someone
suggested, then
	>> no,
	>> I have not seen alot directed at me (especially to a
	>> intranet
	>> server) as I do not run a commercial, educational institute
or ISP
	>> mailserver.
	> As mentioned above, I have seen this sort problem for the last
7 or so
	> years,
	> on various addresses (from commercial, educational, ISP and
	> non-commercial)
	> over that time. Spammers and virus writers are feeding off
each others
	> technical know-how, and abusing the system in any way they can
get away
	> with.
	>> ------------Reply to second post, tonni at hetnet.nl:
	>> ->I have a perfect pdf spam solution, I refuse all mail that
isn't for my
	>> -> users, my 1550+ user site currently refuses far more mail
than it is
	>> -> offered,
	>> In this case (#2), your perfect pdf spam solution would have
	>> to
	>> the storm of bounces already in session...
	> It might, but the problem here is not that it's being rejected
inline -
	> it's
	> that large.email.provider is not adequately filtering mail, no
matter what
	> the source. They're the source of the problem (they accept the
mail in the
	> first place), and they're the ones that should be the source
of your ire.
	> Personally, I put everything through a spam filter. Whether
the user is
	> authenticated or not, whether they're from a trusted IP space
or not, and
	> even if it's from a local process on the machine running the
mail server.
	> I
	> also enforce things like not allowing banned files no matter
how they're
	> injected into the system for the same reason. When it comes to
things like
	> this, I trust no one. It also makes things a lot easier by
reducing the
	> complexity of a setup, and therefore the number of different
paths that
	> need
	> to be tested when things change to ensure correct operation.
	> --
	> Stuart Young - aka Cefiar - cef at optus.net
	> _________________________________________
	> SANSFIRE 2007 July 25-August 2 in Washington, DC.  56 courses,
SANS top
	> instructors, and a great tools and solutions expo. Register
	> http://www.sans.org/info/4651 (brochure code ISC)
	SANSFIRE 2007 July 25-August 2 in Washington, DC.  56 courses,
SANS top
	instructors, and a great tools and solutions expo. Register
	http://www.sans.org/info/4651 (brochure code ISC)

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