BTinternet users have been banned from using a popular IRC network whilst the hunt for a vandal spreading a Trojan continues.
The ban means BT users are prevented from using chat networks run by DALnet, one of the world's biggest IRC service providers, whose network handles over 2 million daily connections and supports a user base of more than 500,000. According to DALnet the ban on BTinternet users was made in self-defence after a problem with a malicious user threatened to get out of control.
In an email, DALnet's technical staff told The Register: "The domain ban was placed after BTinternet's abuse department failed to respond to DALnet's emails regarding an abusive user spreading Trojans.
"When this happens we often have no choice but to ban the entire domain until the ISP in question wakes up and responds (this has happened with for example AOL in the past)."
A spokesman for BTinternet said the ISP has a good record on security and takes incidents of abuse very seriously, however she said that it was "difficult to stop rogue people" abusing any ISP's service.
DALnet said that BTinternet has been in contact now, and agreed the ban should remain until they can deal with the abuse at their end. Postings on the BT Internet newsgroup suggest the ban has been in place since last Wednesday, February 7.
At present it's unknown how long the ban will remain in force, but until the "kline" (kill line) on BTinternet users is lifted they will receive the following terse message when they try to log onto DALnet's network.
"Closing Link: 0.0.0.0 ([exp/bt] Due to continued abuse from BTinternet, your domain is no longer welcome on DALnet. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for further assistance. [AKILL ID:981516547K-a] (2001/02/06 23.34))."
IRC is a non-profit, non-commercial, text-oriented chat environment, which is run by volunteers and is kept alive with donated hardware and bandwidth. ®