Al Iverson over at posted a couple of timely updates regarding the long dead TQMCUBE RBL and the more recently defunct open-whois RBL.

Long Story short the TQMCUBE administrators made some DNS changes that now point their website to a new DNSBL called “invaluement”. Invaluement has made the following PSA regarding old listings in the TQMCUBE block list:

NOTICE: Another DNSBL called TQMCube was discontinued in 2007. Recently, on a purely complimentary basis, they started sending their web traffic to this web site. (We appreciate the favor, and hope that visitors looking for TQMCube will be happy to learn about the invaluement DNSBL.) Please note that there is no business relationship between TQMCube and invaluement. TQMCube‘s (discontinued) data and the invaluement DNSBL data are completely separate and independent.

For more info see the full notice from Invaluement.

Issues with the Open-Whois RBL are a little more timely and urgent – as this RBL is turned on by default in the SpamAssassin basic install and may cause you some minor headaches. Al writes:

As of July 18, 2009, it appears that a squatter has taken over the domain name. At first, the new owner of the domain used a “wildcard” DNS record, resulting in the return of a positive response for any DNS query. The net effect is that every domain checked against this blocklist results in a DNS response that makes your spam filter think that the domain is blocklisted, usually incorrectly so.

Since the issue was first observed, the squatter must have noticed all of this DNS traffic coming from SpamAssassin users and decided that the traffic was undesirable, so they’ve modified the domain in whois so that its name servers point at obviously invalid IP addresses.

For the full summary and instructions for removing this RBL from your local SpamAssassin installation please see Status of DEAD.