Boston Linux & Unix (BLU) Home | Calendar | Mail Lists | List Archives | Desktop SIG | Hardware Hacking SIG
Wiki | Flickr | PicasaWeb | Video | Maps & Directions | Installfests | Keysignings
Linux Cafe | Meeting Notes | Blog | Linux Links | Bling | About BLU

BLU Discuss list archive

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: port blocking fun

 I had a similar experience with Comcast during college. Suddenly our 
internet was turned off completely... This was a week before finals 
and I had MANY hours to World of Warcraft to play so I naturally was 
furious. I called and aparently I was shut off for phishing.... 

I was very confused and asked for information which they couldn't give 
me. I was like... ok what port is this "phishing" site running off of, 
what is it? Can you tell me ANYTHING about the issue that caused me 
internet to be shut off. They couldn't. They gave me the run around 
about the abuse email as well. I'm sure that just goes to /dev/null 
somewhere cause I never got a response from it. Finally (after 
stealing wireless for like 3 days) I got someone on the phone that 
turned it back on for me. The final guy was able to tell me that I had 
port 80 open (I did, to a locked site for configuring certain aspects 
of my phone server) and that this is why they blocked me. Had nothign 
to do with traffic, or virus's or even the confirmation that I had a 
phishing site... just that I had port 80 open. Wonderful communication 
from the initial tech that I talked to and this guy. He was able to 
turn my internet back on after I agreed to change the port from 80 to 
something else... clearly running a site from another port is ok.... 

I feel like such a mean person when I'm on the phone with tech support 
form Verizon and Comcast but I HATE talking to someone that's telling 
me to restart my windows computer for the 5th time after I tell them I 
have a router, have restarted it and aren't even running windows! 


On Jan 8, 2008 10:27 PM, Matthew Gillen <[hidden email]> wrote: 
> Here's a story that will amuse many of you I'm sure: 
> Over the weekend (starting Saturday morning best I can tell) Comcast 
> magically decided I was sending out spam, and put a block on port 25 (on 
> their end).  This meant no incoming or outgoing traffic bound for port 25. 
> I'd been using their smtp server for outgoing mail, and I couldn't even 
> connect to that. 
> Now, I realize what they're doing, and I don't have a problem with it 
> generally, since 95% of their customers would never figure out that they're 
> being blocked, and they probably do have a virus.  But if a customer *does* 
> care that they're being blocked, I would expect a little better response. 
> And don't get me started on how the hell blocking *inbound* mail to my 
> machine helps their "reducing spam" cause... 
> I finally realize there's a problem Sunday night, fire up nmap and confirm 
> that there's a firewall somewhere filtering any port 25 traffic, and get on 
> the phone. 
> 2 full days (for a total of 4 days blocked), more cuss words than I'd care 
> to enumerate, and 6 phone calls later, I'm finally unblocked and getting a 
> deluge of blu mail. 
> A few things I learned: 
>  - when a tech support guy says "we're physically unable to remove the 
> block.  Ever.", he doesn't know what the hell he's talking about. 
>  - if they suggest you send a request for more info to [hidden email], 
> don't bother.  You'll just get an automated reply that gives you a bunch of 
> pointers on how to configure your outlook express client 
>  - their ticket system has some peculiarities: starting Sunday night there 
> was a ticket for removing my block (which was confirmed by the 3 different 
> people I talked to in the middle of this fiasco) and after the block was 
> removed, the last guy couldn't see that there was ever a ticket at all, let 
> alone what the resolution was. 
>  - apparently removing the block involves resetting the cable modem.  This 
> matters, because if you have their digital voice as your phone line, and 
> you're on the phone with their tech support while they perform the unblock, 
> it will seem like they hung up on you. 
> I'm guessing if I'd been pissed off enough with the first call, this 
> probably could've been fixed Sunday night, since it doesn't appear that 
> anyone except the second-to-last guy I talked to did anything useful (and I 
> was pissed at him because I thought he hung up on me). 
> Asking to be "escalated" yielded varying results, from actually sending me 
> to more knowledgeable technician, to doing a merry-go-round in their 
> call-router and ending up back at the same first-tier support center that I 
> started with. 
> Times like these make me sorry that I'm a cheapskate and don't spring for 
> Speakeasy or the like... 
> Hope you enjoyed, 
> Matt 
> PS: if anyone needs to know how to configure Sendmail to send outbound mail 
> to the smarthost's port 587 instead of 25, I can help you, since that was 
> one of the intermediate half-fixes... 
> -- 
> This message has been scanned for viruses and 
> dangerous content by MailScanner, and is 
> believed to be clean. 
> _______________________________________________ 
> Discuss mailing list 
> [hidden email] 

BLU is a member of BostonUserGroups
BLU is a member of BostonUserGroups
We also thank MIT for the use of their facilities.

Valid HTML 4.01! Valid CSS!

Boston Linux & Unix /