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Large volumes of spam spread through the university network

Illustration of a computer with red screen and a skull, signaling danger.A large number of computers are currently blocked from using Eduroam at LiU, after they were used to spread large volumes of spam.

Following an increase in the volume of traffic on Eduroam, the incident response team discovered that private computers were being used to spread large volumes of spam through the network. Most of these are Apple computers that belong to students, and the problem is a consequence of the HolaVPN application being installed on these computers.

HolaVPN is used to gain access to content on the internet that is blocked in the country in which the computer is located. The application makes it possible for you to use networks owned by other people, and gives other people the possibility to use your network to reach blocked content.

The free version of HolaVPN allows others who pay for the application to share the resources of your unit, network and computer power. There is a serious risk that this facility is abused and it has been reported that user networks have been sold to be used in botnets. At LiU, Eduroam has been used by these computers to spread large volumes of spam.

The use of HolaVPN breaches the Rules for use of IT resources at Linköping University, since using HolaVPN requires that you share your network. If HolaVPN is installed on your computer, the incident response team strongly advises you to remove it. If you are unsure on how to do that, contact LiU Helpdesk. The LiU Helpdesk can subsequently help you to reactivate access to Eduroam if you have been blocked.

Skärmvy från Hola VPN:s webbplats.

Screen dump from the HolaVPN website making it clear that resources are shared.

Contact the IT helpdesk


Tel: 013 28 58 98


Page manager: studentredaktionen@liu.se
Last updated: 2019-05-27