DejaNews cracking
They track us, therefore we crack them

DejaNews is a scary subject, as we have seen in my redanonymity page and in my redcounter measures page. They keep track of all usenet entries. This allows to trace the profile of anybody that has contributed (non anonymously) to a newsgroup. It seems to me therefore all too correct to snoop a little on these guys...
When printing from "deja news" on the web you may notice that before printing Netscape throws up a little box saying it was contacting "" Is somebody keeping track of what people print on their news searches?
Yes! At the very least they are keeping track of how many people see their ugly advertisements. But I fear Globaltrak is doing a bit more. Check your cookies.txt file in your Netscape directory. You may very well have an entry from Globaltrak in there (that is... you'll have it only if you do not have already created a directory with the name "cookies.txt" inside your Netscape directory, as I would advice you to do, in order to eliminate once for all every cookie they would like to throw at you :-)

Let's find out who these globaltrack guys are... trying to go to doesn't get you anywhere. A search on the web and through usenet news doesn't reveal anything about Globaltrak. Looks like somebody is trying to hide something. Let's see who Globaltrak is.

 host:~> whois
 Globaltrak (GLOBALTRAK2-DOM)
    1504 Carriage Hills Trail
    Cedar Park, Texas 78613
    Domain Name: GLOBALTRAK.NET
    Administrative Contact, Technical Contact, Zone Contact, Billing Contact:
       Knight, Stephanie  (SK1019)  knights@GLOBALTRAK.NET
       (512) 292-5593
    Record last updated on 30-May-96.
    Record created on 30-May-96.
    Domain servers in listed order:

We have a name now. Let's see what we can find from that.
   host:~> finger knights@GLOBALTRAK.NET
   unknown host: GLOBALTRAK.NET

Hmm. "unknown host" Well let see where the mail for Globaltrak goes.
 host:~> dig mx
 ; > mx
 ;; ->>HEADER

Ok. Mail for Globaltrak goes to Let's see if we can find are person there.

 host:~> finger

Hmm. Looks like they don't give out finger information. Maybe they're concerned about their privacy. Let's see who is.
 host:~> whois
 Bob Gustwick & Associates, Inc. (BGA-DOM)
    822 Brentwood
    Austin, TX 78757-3031
    Domain Name: BGA.COM
    Administrative Contact, Technical Contact, Zone Contact, Billing Contact:
       DNS Administrator, Real/Time  (RD182)  rt_tech@REALTIME.NET
       +1 512 451 0046 (FAX) +1 512 459 3858
    Record last updated on 27-Jun-96.
    Record created on 08-Feb-93.
    Domain servers in listed order:

That's interesting. So bga is Bob Gustwick & Associates. Let's see what bga has at their web site.

 host:~> lynx www.BGA.COM
                              Real/Time Communications Local Home Page
                           Real/Time Communications
 Real/Time Communications?  That's odd.  Let's do a little more digging.
 host:~> traceroute
 traceroute to (, 30 hops max, 40 byte packets
  8 (  222 ms  103 ms  103 ms
  9 (  103 ms  102 ms  107 ms
 host:~> traceroute
 traceroute to (, 30 hops max, 40 byte packets
  8 (  105 ms  107 ms  103 ms
  9 (  103 ms  102 ms  102 ms

Looks like Real/Time Communications and Bob Gustwick & Associates are one in the same. Let's see if we can get to Globaltrak at all.

 host:~> ping
 PING ( 56 data bytes
 ^C PING Statistics----
 11 packets transmitted, 0 packets received, 100% packet loss

Well that doesn't work. Looks like they doen't want to acknowledge they exist. Let's try another way.
 host:~> traceroute
 traceroute to (, 30 hops max, 40 byte packets
  4  sl-chi-15-H3/ (  40 ms  41 ms  40 ms
  5  sl-kc-2-H3/ (  52 ms  51 ms  52 ms
  6  sl-fw-5-H3/ (  91 ms  91 ms  93 ms
  7  sl-fw-13-F0/ (  92 ms  91 ms  98 ms
  8 (  185 ms  192 ms  202 ms
  9 (  164 ms * *
 10  * * *
 11  * * *
 12  * * *

Well that didn't get there, but it tells us something interesting: "" or just "bobgust". Looks like this Bob Gustwick guy is some major player in Globaltrak.

A search of usenet shows that this guy is hiring a lot of people in the Austin area of Texas. And a search on the web shows this.

      Bob Gustwick Associates, Inc.
      Travis county
 Postal Address
      8760A Research Blvd. Suite 152
      Austin, Tx 78758
 Phone Number
      +1 512 451-0046
      A supplier of Unix consulting services and Internet services.

The web search also provided this little nugget.
Case in point: DejaNews, a searcher that digs through Usenet posts. It doesn't carry every newsgroup, but it's fast, and for the moment it's free. Internic has them registered as being Bob Gustwick Associates of Austin, Texas. They're coy about their future plans: "we may eventually need to charge for some queries. We will try to avoid this but we can not rule it out." Draw your own conclusions.

Hmm. Dejanews is part of Bob Gustwick Associates?
 host:~> whois
 Deja News, Inc. (DEJANEWS2-DOM)
    5407-B Clay Avenue
    Austin, TX 78756
    Domain Name: DEJANEWS.COM
    Administrative Contact:
       Madere, Steve  (SM1488)  madere@DEJANEWS.COM
    Technical Contact, Zone Contact:
       DNS Administrator  (DA389-ORG)  dntech@DEJANEWS.COM
    Billing Contact:
       Accounts Payable, Deja News  (DNA8)  accounting@DEJANEWS.COM
    Record last updated on 23-Oct-96.
    Record created on 19-Mar-96.
    Domain servers in listed order:

Yep. Looks like Dejanews and Real/Time Communications are all part of Bob Gustwick Associates. That's as much as I could find at the moment. You might try and contact Globaltrak (512) 292-5593 and ask them what they're doing. You might also contact Bob Gustwick Associates (512) 451-0046 and ask if they are related to Globaltrak or just providing their Internet connection.

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