Australia’s fight against malware

Anti-spam measures, an example to follow?

Australia has taken a major step forward in the fight against malware. The country’s Internet Service Providers (ISPs) have recently banded together to draw up a draft code of conduct designed to protect their subscribers. The fight against all kinds of malicious attacks found on the Internet: Trojans, spam, false negatives, worms and more. Thanks to zombie machines, these infections are easily transmitted over the Internet. With the new code of conduct, Australia’s ISP associations will be in a better position to monitor the network and take appropriate action in the event of illegal activity.

Measures proposed by Australian ISPs.

The draft code of conduct contains several proposals aimed at limiting or even eradicating malware. Providers are planning to give subscribers accurate and effective information, limit their Internet access, make their connection more secure by installing them in a safe environment, temporarily cut off access to certain protocols when necessary, and so on. The associations also plan to pass on to the relevant authorities any information that could help them combat malicious acts on the Internet, especially in the event of serious incidents that could damage the country’s vital infrastructures.

This draft code of conduct is the fruit of a partnership between the public and private sectors. Internet security specialists see it as a successful project, and are even ready to support it. It can also help Australian ISPs improve the quality of their bandwidth and server services.

Renewal of the driving project in other countries.

The driving project could also benefit other countries, particularly France. Current debates revolve around protecting subscribers from all the measures announced in the project. A number of questions have been raised, in particular about the rights of subscribers affected by the disconnection of their Internet access, the time taken to restore all the services offered and the automatic detection of the connection as soon as it returns to normal.

Specialists have also expressed their thoughts on the involvement of the country’s authorities in controlling the botnet command server. Even if these far-reaching measures can help to deactivate all malware, or warn users with an official alert message, their effectiveness still depends on their supervision and support of Internet users.

IETF standard: a project to watch.

Since 2009, the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) has been working on a set of recommendations for ISPs. Its aim is to eliminate the propagation of malicious networks on subscribers’ machines. As a standard package, the project will be available to all ISPs worldwide. This is a far-reaching anti-malware solution that can be used to neutralize the phenomenal growth in malware currently observed.

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