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  3. Unexplained Traffic Usage

Unexplained Traffic Usage

Problem summary

  • An internet connection may contain unexplained usage on the stats page.
  • There are a number of causes of unwanted traffic as explained below.


Network Chatter

  • Up to 10mb per day of random packets caused by portscans, DNS, router update checks, remote pings etc.
  • This will occur even if your PCs are switched off if you have a router as opposed to a USB based ADSL modem.


  • New Skype client generates traffic even if not in use.
  • This is because Skype can turn any PC into a 3rd party router for assisting in its P2P telephony functioning.

Stolen Username

  • There are known hackers actively scanning insecure routers to obtain usernames and passwords.
  • These details are then used to steal bandwidth from the account.
  • This can be avoided by using DSL Secure.

Wireless Hijacking

  • If your router is wireless-enabled, hackers in the nearby vicinity may be using your bandwidth for their own purposes, even if WEP or WPA is enabled.

Spyware, Malware, Viruses, Trojans, Rootkits

  • Any of the PCs connected may be infected with the above causing your machine to become a zombie for sending spam or an instrument in sending a denial of service attacks.
  • New evidence suggests rootkit technology is now being employed to avoid detection by most antivirus programs.


Network chatter

  • Turn off your router to avoid any traffic charges.
  • Alternatively, put the router in “stealth mode” – this makes it appear to be offline to the outside world and reduces the small amount of daily wastage.


  • Log out of Skype when not in use.
  • Use a different client e.g. MSN Messenger or other SIP-based voice services.

Stolen Username

  • Change all passwords – ADSL password, router password, Customer Zone password etc.
  • Enable Webafrica’s DSL Secure technology – this allows you to lock your account to your own physical ADSL line preventing it from being used elsewhere.
  • This can be found at http://dsl.webafrica.co.za/ or by clicking the Manage button on your account in the Customer Zone.

Wireless Hijacking

  • Enable WPA-PSK encryption using a 12+ character random password.
  • Do not use known words, product names, labels or anything else.
  • Do not use WEP encryption as this can be cracked within minutes giving a false sense of security.

Spyware, Malware, Viruses, Trojans, Rootkits


There are also various tools available to track traffic usage on individual PCs, the easiest to use is probably Netlimiter:
• NetLimiter

Please also see the password guidelines to ensure the passwords you have selected are adequately secure:
• Password guide

Please note: All Webafrica deals and packages are subject to change without notification. These include our terms and conditions as it relates to costs and deal/package structures for all of our service providers.

Updated on July 30, 2023

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