How to Report IP Abuse
Knowing how to report IP abuse is critical. All Internet users should understand the process. However, it’s especially important if:
- You manage a network
- You oversee a website
- One or more IP addresses are attacking your Internet-connected device
In any of these scenarios, you need to know how to report IP abuse.
How do I know if I am experiencing IP abuse?
IP abuse is a general term used to describe all types of cybercrime, including malware, phishing attacks, and other hacking incidents. There isn’t a specific checklist of symptoms for Internet users to go through if they think they’re experiencing IP abuse. However, the following things can indicate that you may need to report an abusive IP address:
- You receive spam messages from the same email address repeatedly
- Your computer deletes or removes files without your permission
- Your computer is excessively slow and crashes often
- You find your antivirus program disabled or no longer working, despite being up to date
- You can’t access the Internet or certain websites, regardless of your WiFi connection
If you experience any of these issues, or other symptoms of malware, phishing attacks, DDOS attacks, or spam, consider following the steps below to investigate the potential IP abuse.
However, know that the chances are good the IP address you see abusing your connection isn’t actually the IP address that belongs to the hacker attempting to compromise your network. Oftentimes, the owner of the IP address is unaware that their device is being used as a host for attacks. They aren’t aware that their computer scanned and attacked other networks, devices, or websites.
Because of the possibility that the person became victim to a hacker without their knowledge, proceed cautiously with your IP abuse reports. Don’t attack the owner of the IP via email address or computer message; instead, focus on reporting the abuse and fixing the problem.
Steps to Report IP Abuse
To report IP abuse, here’s what you should do:
Review your logs
1. Review your logs to find the IP address or IP addresses you feel are attempting to compromise your connection.
Use the IP WHOIS Lookup tool to investigate
2. Use the IP WHOIS Lookup tool to learn more about the network to which the abusive IP addresses are assigned.
Look at the IP WHOIS Lookup results
3. Within the IP WHOIS Lookup returned results, there will be an email address for the assignee of the IP address. Typically, this email is abuse@[networkdomain.com].
Use the email address provided to report the IP abuse
4. Use the email address provided to report the IP abuse and any other findings. Include as much detail about the interactions or abuse as you can; this helps in the report and investigation.
Keep in mind, again, that the IP address you find most likely does not belong to the abuser themselves. Be kind in your email and explain the situation. The person who owns the manipulated devices will be able to close the connection, secure their device, and review their logs to determine where the connection came from. They, in turn, can report the IP abuse to the point of contact for the offending IP address.