Telstra hunts for ADSL hacker

Telstra hunts for ADSL hacker

Telstra retail said

it will attempt to track the

source of a Trojan virus attack which exposed passwords and

user names of 69 ADSL broadband customers last week.

Corporate affairs manager for Telstra retail, Stuart Gray told ARN that contrary to rumours, the vulnerability had not originated inside Telstra's systems but externally via consumer PCs.

"Hackers didn't gain access to any Telstra system," assured Gray.

He said Telstra has no legal or contractual responsibility to pursue the matter, however there is a possibility the virus lodged onto a narrowband service, exposing BigPond customers and their account details.

Gray said the police have been informed and the telco is working in conjunction with the broadband user site where the attack was first spotted, in an effort to identify the source. Given the nature of the environment, Gray admits however, the chances of success are limited.

Meanwhile, the telco has sustained criticism for not promptly informing customers of the problem. Some affected parties were still unaware of the attack as late as Tuesday, last week. Gray said Telstra was not making a concerted effort to contact users.

This [breach] is something Telstra has no control over and demonstrates the need for all users, even at a home-user level, to take PC and Internet security issues seriously."

Gray advises customers to change passwords on a regular basis and install and update their anti virus software.

This recent kerfuffle comes just days after Telstra received a lashing over the failure of its high-speed ADSL Internet service. According to media reports, the telco is set to face a class action in the Federal Court involving up to 300 unhappy subscribers.

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