iZSearch: New “private” search engine – advertised by spam

On July 16, our spamtraps started getting solicitations about iZSearch.com – a new private way to search the Web. We figured this had to have been a crank, but it turns out it wasn’t. The mail is coming from 70.167.8.42 update 9/17: and from 178.168.111.21.


A group of Test our new search engine iZSearch.com spams followed in the end of July to beginning of August. Still, we didn’t react.

In late August, they started hitting spamtraps with subject lines lifted from the published work of the target address owners. Given the target addresses, and the content, it is clear that they have been harvesting (both!) from PubMed.

So, we listed their domain name, and their network range:

NetRange:       70.167.8.40 - 70.167.8.47
CIDR:           70.167.8.40/29
NetName:        NETBLK-SD-IZS-OFHFC-70-167-8-40
NetHandle:      NET-70-167-8-40-1
Parent:         NETBLK-SD-OHFC-70-167-0-0 (NET-70-167-0-0-1)
NetType:        Reassigned
OriginAS:       
Organization:   iZSearch, Inc. (IZSEA)
RegDate:        2015-04-07
Updated:        2015-04-07
Ref:            http://whois.arin.net/rest/net/NET-70-167-8-40-1

OrgName:        iZSearch, Inc.
OrgId:          IZSEA
Address:        1921 Palomar Oaks Way
Address:        Suite 300
City:           Carlsbad
StateProv:      CA
PostalCode:     92008
Country:        USRegDate:        2015-04-07
Updated:        2015-04-15
Ref:            http://whois.arin.net/rest/org/IZSEA

OrgTechHandle: BAITA-ARIN
OrgTechName:   Baitaluk, Michael 
OrgTechPhone:  +1-858-480-9531 
OrgTechEmail:  [email protected]
OrgTechRef:    http://whois.arin.net/rest/poc/BAITA-ARIN

OrgAbuseHandle: BAITA-ARIN
OrgAbuseName:   Baitaluk, Michael 
OrgAbusePhone:  +1-858-480-9531 
OrgAbuseEmail:  [email protected]
OrgAbuseRef:    http://whois.arin.net/rest/poc/BAITA-ARIN

and will be informing Cox about it.

As an interesting side note, it appears that at least one major blocklist, SORBS, is listing the IP address 70.167.8.42 as well – and seems to have beat us to it.

6 thoughts on “iZSearch: New “private” search engine – advertised by spam

  1. RocketScientist Post author

    If we had to guess we’d say iZSearch is an attempt to commercialize the authors’ earlier academic work, IntegromeDB. One would have thought that being a published author receiving Scientific Spam would have been a deterrent to sending it yourself, but as other examples on this site have shown, we’re clearly misled in such thoughts.

    Reply
  2. RocketScientist Post author

    Also coming in from [178.168.111.21]

    % Abuse contact for '178.168.111.21 - 178.168.111.21' is '[email protected]'

    inetnum: 178.168.111.21 - 178.168.111.21
    netname: iZSearchNET
    descr: iZSearch, Inc
    descr: 1921 Palomar Oaks Way, Suite 300
    descr: Carlsbad
    country: US

    % Information related to '178.168.0.0/17AS31252'

    route: 178.168.0.0/17
    descr: SC STARNET SRL
    origin: AS31252
    mnt-by: MNT-STARNETMD
    created: 2010-03-18T13:56:47Z
    last-modified: 2010-03-18T13:56:47Z
    source: RIPE # Filtered

    Reply
  3. herr doktor bimler

    The sh1tweasels tell me that “We are very proud of your achievement”. Thanks, dudes, I’m glad to have lived up to your high expectations.
    ————————————
    “Dr. Bimler David,
    We have viewed your highlighted paper:
    Multidimensional scaling of D15 caps: color-vision defects among tobacco smokers?
    in Visual neuroscience
    We are very proud of your achievement and wish you more success in your research.
    You probably make a lot of searches for publications, patents and previous art in your field.
    There is a danger that the artificial intelligence behind big search engine company like Google reverse-engineer people’s searches to point their own engineering team toward nascent, potentially profitable ideas.”
    ————————————
    What is their first language?

    Reply
  4. RocketScientist Post author

    @ Welcher Computer: If you didn’t ask to receive it, and we know that it’s bulk, and obviously it’s email, that makes it Unsolicited Bulk Email, and that’s all that counts.

    Reply

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