How Belkin routers spammed users

How Belkin routers spammed users

From NetSurfer Digest

VeriSign had this year’s Esteemed Award for Technical Marketing Evilness (EATME) all locked up with its attempt to redirect DNS queries to its own search server, but all of a sudden we have a real contest on our hands. Belkin, a manufacturer of networking equipment, has leaped into the fray. Some genius at that company decided that every once in a while, Belkin routers should redirect a random Web request from your browser to Belkin’s Web site for advertising purposes.

To turn this feature off, users had to go to Belkin’s Web site and ask the company to remotely switch off the behavior in the router, a process that does not work through a firewall. Can you say: 1) security hole; 2) broken automated Web requests; 3) spamming; 4) egregious waste of your time; 5) moral repugnance? Sure enough, consumers tore Belkin a new virtual orifice in scathing online feedback.

The company has quickly backpedaled, and plans to release a firmware fix to disable this feature by Nov. 17. The Register has the story, while Slashdot has the outrage and notes about technical repercussions of this kind of thing.

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