No-one takes blame for missing email

A local ISP says email bound for its users is being blocked by a US-based ISP but neither the ISP or Telecom are willing to sort out the problem.

A New Zealand ISP says email bound for its users is being blocked by a US-based ISP, but neither the ISP or Telecom are willing to sort out the problem.

“AboveNet is trying to intercept mail coming into Telecom and on to MIS [Manawatu Internet Services]. Their routers are advertising for our net blocks,” says MIS director, George Annear. “It appears to be only mail routed through AboveNet that’s affected.”

Networks arrange for traffic to be routed back to their IP addresses by advertising an appropriate route to peers and providers, based on speed and capacity. AboveNet advertises its availability and then is supposed to deliver MIS traffic on to the ISP.

“They’re filtering based on content for MIS.”

Annear says AboveNet is doing this solely because of MIS’s role in the ORBS open relay black list. MIS was hosting both the list and testing, but has since shifted the testing facility to Europe. It is mail about the ORBS list that is being blocked, says Annear.

But AboveNet denies it is blocking any email.

“At no time am I intercepting their mail,” says AboveNet co-founder Dave Rand, speaking from the US. He says the problem is one between Telecom and MIS and AboveNet doesn’t involve itself in difficulties between one of its customers and their customers.

Telecom, however, says the missing email is nothing to do with them as this is a problem MIS is having with AboveNet.

“We provide the road, if you like, and it’s up to our customers as to what they do on it,” says spokesperson Linda Sanders.

That leaves Annear without any clear action to take, and without any email.

“I’ve made direct representations to [Telecom] saying what’s happening is illegal, but they’re not interested.”

Annear says his only option is to make waves publicly about the issue.

“It’s only going to change when people start losing customers because of what they’re doing.”

Annear says there aren’t any laws in place that are applicable to this situation and there isn’t any contract between MIS and AboveNet — his contract is with Telecom.

“The fact is [AboveNet is] an overseas’ company and I would guarantee there are no international laws that cover this.”

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