Email rejected by gcc list

Stephen Moshier
Mon Feb 7 05:26:00 GMT 2000

The below dispute has been going on for months so that
my email to Cygnus goes to a black hole.  Changing ISPs is not an option because Mediaone apparently has a monopoly on broadband service in my neighborhood.
I know that Mediaone does check for security problems
because they gave me a citation once and I had to
upgrade my sendmail installation.  So I am inclined
to think that ORBS is the one who should back down.
Date: Sun, 06 Feb 2000 22:37:08 -0500
From: "W. Mark Herrick, Jr." <>
Subject: Re: failure notice (fwd)


We are currently experiencing problems delivering email to This 
is due to a manual block from the ORBS system of which cygnus.comt 
subscribes. Although we have a thorough anti-SPAM policy and properly 
address these issues, Road Runner has been manually added to the ORBS list 
due to a request we made to the ORBS administrators. (see HISTORY) With 
analysis and discussions with other providers, we believe that the impact 
of the ORBS block is very minimal and easily corrected on a case-by-case 
basis. We are currently only hearing 1 or 2 reports per day from our entire 
customer base. We will take the information provided and work with each 
provider to correct it with them directly.

I can assure you that the IP address that ORBS is currently blocking is in 
no way an open relay, and that it is being blocked solely due to ORBS' 
testing servers being refused at our border routers. Road Runner takes the 
issue of open relay servers very seriously, and, in addition to immediately 
closing them as they are detected, performs proactive relay detection 
checks on its own network. Likewise, Road Runner also takes the issue of 
unauthorized probes very seriously, and as such has taken steps to minimize 
potential abuse from outside sources.

  W. Mark Herrick, Jr. <>
      Senior Security Administrator
      Team Lead - Usenet Operations
   Road Runner Security - 703.345.2477


Road Runner customers and Affiliates initially contacted us with a security 
issue. They were concerned with their privacy and security when an unknown 
entity (to them) began scanning them without permission. We initially tried 
to address this case by case and later contacted the ORBS administrators 
and requested this unwelcome scanning terminated. This is analogous to 
someone requesting they be removed from a list that they did not subscribe 
to. With this request, all Road Runner IP space was unexpectedly added to 
the ORBS list with a public statement on the ORBS WWW site, as well as the 
bounce message which our subscriber has received. As scanning continued 
against our repeated requests, the individual ORBS scanning hosts were 
filtered out of our network.

Although we strongly believe in stopping SPAM on the Internet, as well as 
respect the initial work and charter ORBS has been under in the past, we 
have serious concerns at the current methods and actions that are taking place:

- Scanning of private networks without permission from targets
- No REMOVE capability from the ORBS scanner
- When someone tries to stop or block the ORBS scans, they are blocked by ORBS.
- No warning, as well as false public statements about the individuals 
scanned or their provider. THAT IS: If you have a relay (known, or unknown 
to you) you are called a SPAM supporter publicly without any warning to 
correct it before ORBS adds you.
- Misinformation on ORBS' own web site 
( ) "What is ORBS? The short answer: ORBS 
is a validated database of open mail relays and open mail relay output 
points, accessable via DNS lookup."
- The addition of Road Runner hosts to a "secret" database. Road Runner 
hosts are not listed via their normal web lookup at

Road Runner believes strongly in the fight against SPAM.  We have address 
it with strong policies, enforcement and our own relay detection 
methods.  We will continue this effort, work together with other providers 
and the Internet community (including ORBS) to make a difference.  However, 
we reserve the right to assess the methods used, by whom and determine the 
best way to accomplish the desired results for our business.


Free Internet Access from AltaVista: Get it, share it & win!

More information about the Gcc mailing list