South Korea to block port 25 as anti-spam countermeasure

Summary:South Korea is considering a nation wide block of port 25, as a anti-spam countermeasure aiming to reduce the volumes of spam affecting the country.

South Korea is considering a nation wide block of port 25, as a anti-spam countermeasure aiming to reduce the volumes of spam affecting the country.

The ban, set to go in effect as of December, will replace port 25 with port 587 and 465 for SMTPS.

Why is this initiative prone to fail?

Mostly because of the way modern malware and spam networks operate. For instance, modern malware has built-in SMTP engines that are port-independent. Moreover, geolocated and malware-infected hosts within South Korea could be automatically updated using the new specs in a matter of seconds, once again continuing the abuse of legitimate networks, while playing by the newly introduced rules.

Spamming through web-based email is yet another way for cybercriminals to bypass the newly introduced regulations. Once the CAPTCHA-solving process for popular free web-based email providers has been outsourced to Indian providers of CAPTCHA-solving services, thousands of newly registered emails will be automatically used for outgoing spamming purposes, once again successfully bypassing the newly introduced regulation.

What do you think? Would the blocking of port 25 reduce the levels of spam significantly, or is the initiative prone to fail?

Talkback.

Topics: Malware, Collaboration, Security

About

Dancho Danchev is an independent security consultant and cyber threats analyst, with extensive experience in open source intelligence gathering, and cybercrime incident response. He's been an active security blogger since 2007, and maintains a popular security blog sharing real-time threats intelligence data with the rest of the community... Full Bio

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