Rich Kulawiec on 6 Sep 2018 05:21:47 -0700

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Re: [PLUG] Linux tip: Log IP addresses, not hostnames, for use by fail2ban...

On Fri, Aug 31, 2018 at 05:33:41PM -0400, Fred Stluka wrote:
> You may have blocked all of AWS a little too long, and gotten
> to be out of date.?? 

Nope.  This is current experience.   (a) I don't block all of them
from everything and (b) even when I do block them, I log the attempts
for research purposes.  This furnishes me with ongoing data as observed
at a variety of locations.

> From my experience, very few attacks currently come from AWS,
> and when they do, I report them.?? Within a couple days I get a
> reply from AWS saying it's been investigated and dealt with, and
> the attacks from that IP address stop.

There's a lot to unpack here, so bear with me, please.

First, attacks as observed at any one service/host/network/ASN/etc.
may differ sharply from attacks observed at another.  (The reasons
why constitute a much longer discussion.)  So both your observations
and my observations may both be accurate simultaneously.

Second, while I've singled out AWS for particular criticism, they're
by no means the only incompetent/negligent/hostile operation out there.
Digital Ocean is just as bad.  So is Psychz.  So is Volia.  So are others.

Third, part of the reason that I've singled out AWS is that they're one
of the wealthiest operations on the planet.  Amazon's now valued at $1
trillion.  They could afford to staff a 100-person 24x7 response desk
that provided individual/personal responses within the hour in a dozen
languages without even noticing the missing pocket change.  Yet that's
not what happens.

Fourth, "days" is unacceptable.  "Minutes" is acceptable.  See previous

Fifth, and this could be a much longer discussion, so I'll just mention it:
abuse control gets easier the larger the scale.  I'm putting that
in here because sometimes people try to use the size of an operation
as an excuse for their incompetence.   So, given their size,
and given their wealth, they should be the absolute best on the
planet at this.  They should be the ones that everyone else is trying
to catch up to.  But they're not.

Sixth, let's accept for a moment that your experience reflects their
overall responsiveness (even though it doesn't match my experience).
Why did this happen?

To be clear, what I'm asking is why wasn't their performance this good
to begin with?  They have essentially unlimited financial and
personnel resources.  They started AWS after the time that abuse/attacks
were rampant, well-documented, often-discussed, and thus they should
have known that these would be a problem because everyone with a pulse
knew they were a problem.  They allegedly hire smart and clueful people.
Why didn't they design and build and operate with this in mind?

Seventh, let's examine this from another (but related) viewpoint.

Why is this even necessary?  Why aren't they pro-actively stopping the
abuse before it's necessary for you (or me, or anyone else) to file
a report?  After all, if we can see it arriving, then they can just
as easily see it leaving.  Why aren't they looking for it and taking
prompt remedial action before any of us have to even lift a finger?

And to take it a step further, having observed this over and over
and over again, why haven't they taken action to stop it permanently?
Anybody competent and responsible, on observing these myriad repeated
patterns, would have long since figured out how to prevent most of it
from ever escaping their operation.  The only attacks/abuse we should
ever see should be ones that are new/novel, and even those should
stop rather quickly.

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