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Counter^2-attack on Lycos UK

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    Site inaccessible for most of Wednesday£¬ Lycos Europe denies attack on zombie army Published: December 1, 2004, 10:35 AM PST By Dan Ilett Special to CNET
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 1, 2004
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      Site inaccessible for most of Wednesday£¬
      Lycos Europe denies attack on zombie army
      Published: December 1, 2004, 10:35 AM PST
      By Dan Ilett
      Special to CNET News.com

      Internet portal Lycos Europe has denied that its "Make love not spam"
      Web site was hacked into and defaced last night.

      The company said that an e-mail that contained an apparent mirror
      image of the Web site being hacked was a hoax generated by spammers.

      "This is a hoax," said Malte Pollmann, director of communication
      services for Lycos Europe. "We have obviously reached our goal and
      are getting to the spammers. On our servers, we don't have any logs
      of an attack. No one was able to verify that."

      Despite the company's assertions, the site was inaccessible for most
      of Wednesday, according to Internet analysis firm Netcraft.

      Lycos Europe is a separate company from the Web portal that bears the
      Lycos name in the United States. Lycos Europe claims that it
      maintains roughly 40 million e-mail accounts across eight European
      countries.

      The "Make love not spam" Web site was reported to have been
      inaccessible for some time last night, and an e-mail was sent to
      security company F-Secure with what appeared to be a mirror image of
      a defacement of the site. The defacement read:

      "Yes, attacking spammers is wrong. You know this, you shouldn't be
      doing it. Your IP address and request have been logged and will be
      reported to your ISP for further action."


      Lycos Europe introduced its "Make love not spam" campaign, which
      offers users a screen saver that helps to launch distributed denial-
      of-service (DDoS) attacks on spammers' Web sites, this week. The
      company said the screen saver uses the idle processing power of a
      computer to slow down the response times from spammers' Web sites--
      much in the same way spammers use compromised PCs to distribute
      unsolicited e-mail messages.

      But Lycos Europe also denied it was using denial-of-service attacks.

      "I have to be very clear that it's not a denial-of-service attack,"
      Pollmann said. "We slow the remaining bandwidth to 5 percent. It
      wouldn't be in our interests to (carry out DDoS attacks). It is to
      increase the cost of spamming. We have an interest to make this,
      economically, not more attractive."

      Steve Linford, the director of international spam-fighting
      organization the SpamHaus Project, said that by attacking spammer
      bandwidth, Lycos could be attacking innocent users' bandwidth too.

      But Pollmann sidestepped that question. "We want to hit targeted
      bandwidth," he said. "We are selecting spammers from blacklists. We
      verify every address. Professional spammers run on very dedicated
      media."

      Finnish antivirus company F-Secure warned users on Tuesday not to
      participate in Lycos' campaign because it might involve "possible
      legal problems."

      Dan Ilett of reported from London.

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