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Usage query..surely this cannot be right

snapper_mart
Grafter
Posts: 175
Registered: 03-08-2007

Usage query..surely this cannot be right

I was quite surprised when I got an email saying I had used my peak time allowance, I'm sure I havent used much this month. So I checked the Usage history and the results (shown below) say I have used 28 GB in email??

I don't receive that much personal mail..certainly hardly any with attachments, unless its all the spam that Plus net kindly arranged to be sent to me Sad
Can some one advise me on this please?

Thanks

Peak usage Off-peak usage: Total usage
Web 3.34GB 997.85MB 4.33GB
Email 5.82GB 22.32GB 28.14GB
Broadband phonecalls 1.53MB 23.59KB 1.55MB
Gaming 565.47MB 24.95MB 590.42MB
Streaming 107.04MB 21.55MB 128.58MB
PlusNet FTP 657.59KB 39.15KB 696.74KB
Peer-to-peer 347.3KB 186.73KB 534.03KB
Usenet 1.73GB 957.17MB 2.69GB
FTP (non PlusNet) 171.51MB 52.03MB 223.54MB
Other 1.75GB 324.62MB 2.08GB
Total usage so far 13.48GB 24.7GB 38.18GB


Now
13 REPLIES
p_w_d_stone
Grafter
Posts: 315
Registered: 05-04-2007

Usage query..surely this cannot be right

28GB in e-mail is HUGE - immediately run full antivirus and spyware scans on all the computers connected to your network. If you've using a wireless network ensure that it is properly encrypted and secured.
snapper_mart
Grafter
Posts: 175
Registered: 03-08-2007

Usage query..surely this cannot be right

Scanned both PCs for viruses and with Spybot & Adaware (all updated daily!), but no threats or problems found. Could the usage chart be falsely reporting some other usage as email?Huh
p_w_d_stone
Grafter
Posts: 315
Registered: 05-04-2007

Usage query..surely this cannot be right

This is unlikely with e-mail as the traffic uses well defined ports and is extremely distinctive. Regardless if the traffic is being correctly identified, and it really should be, the amounts of data really are huge - I'd not expect most domestic customers total usage for a quarter to reach what you've used on e-mail in a month.

Do you use wireless to connect both your computers to the internet, and how is this encrypted?
snapper_mart
Grafter
Posts: 175
Registered: 03-08-2007

Usage query..surely this cannot be right

Thanks for replying peter, I connect Wirelessly using WPA-PSK encryption. Looking again at my figures, I would have expected my Usenet usage to be higher, is it possible that this could be being reported as email?
N/A

Usage query..surely this cannot be right

That's a helluva lot of email!

Do you leave your router on all the time? Can you connect to it and see stats on it? Do you use windows - can you make the network icon appear in the bottom right and see if it's going flickery flickery all the time? (I have that on all the time anyway 'in case').

Do you have a firewall? (I would advise this).

Maybe close down all known internet applications for a couple minutes and then open up a command prompt and type netstat <return> and see if anything unusual is still connected?
Like remote email servers!

(that shows all your current net connections).

I don't know much about IMAP, .. is it possible it's doing something mad in a client and its in a loop trying to do something over the email port? Or you have a spam washer client constantly scanning remote mail?
Plusnet Staff
Plusnet Staff
Posts: 12,169
Thanks: 18
Fixes: 1
Registered: 04-04-2007

Usage query..surely this cannot be right

Hi,

Looking at the raw data it confirms the usage as correct and for a bit of peace of mind at least it shows the usage as mainly download rather than upload. Were it a virus I'd expect to see it mainly be upload traffic.

I guess it's in theory possible that it's usenet traffic, out of interest which news server and port do you use?
snapper_mart
Grafter
Posts: 175
Registered: 03-08-2007

Usage query..surely this cannot be right

News server is News Demon and port is 119. I am almost 100% sure I dont download that amount of mail!
Plusnet Staff
Plusnet Staff
Posts: 12,169
Thanks: 18
Fixes: 1
Registered: 04-04-2007

Usage query..surely this cannot be right

Does the pattern look right though if you assumed most of the email usage was usenet? I'll have to have a look into this in more detail but if the total looks right then I think I know what's going on.
snapper_mart
Grafter
Posts: 175
Registered: 03-08-2007

Usage query..surely this cannot be right

Yep, I guess that would be about right for Usenet use. Smiley

M
p_w_d_stone
Grafter
Posts: 315
Registered: 05-04-2007

Usage query..surely this cannot be right

Dave, can you explain how USENET could be mis-identified as e-mail. E-mail has to use one of three very well defined ports that are standardised across the world - on this basis surely it should be impossible to mis-identify any other traffic as e-mail? If it's not using these ports then it's not e-mail.
Plusnet Staff
Plusnet Staff
Posts: 12,169
Thanks: 18
Fixes: 1
Registered: 04-04-2007

Usage query..surely this cannot be right

It looks like News Demon allow Usenet over different ports including port 25 so I'm wondering if they're doing something funky their side with the traffic even if you select port 119. I'll look into it.
p_w_d_stone
Grafter
Posts: 315
Registered: 05-04-2007

Usage query..surely this cannot be right

Ironically this must be designed to get around traffic management by ISPs.

Thanks for your explanation Dave, looks like the OP's problem is resolved, unless you've got any further questions Martin?
snapper_mart
Grafter
Posts: 175
Registered: 03-08-2007

Usage query..surely this cannot be right

Hi, not really got any further questions, I was concerned at first that I was the source of all spam worldwide!!

Thanks for your help guys Smiley

Martin