North American Network Operators Group

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qmail smtp-auth bug allows open relay

  • From: John Brown
  • Date: Mon Jul 14 12:35:18 2003

seems that there are installs of the smtp-auth patch
to qmail that accept anything as a user name and password
and thus allow you to connect.

is one URL that talks about this.

There has been an increase is what appears to be qmail based
open-relays over the last 5 days.  Each of these servers
pass the normal suite of open-relay tests.

Spammers are scanning for SMTP-AUTH and STARTTLS based 
mail servers that may be misconfigured. Then using them
to send out their trash.

Some early docs on setting up qmail based smtp-auth systems
had the config infor incorrect.  This leads to /usr/bin/true
being used as the password checker. :(

>From an operational perspective, I suspect we will see more
SMTP scans

The basic test (see URL above) should get incorporated into
various open-relay testing scripts.


john brown
chagres technologies, inc