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Spammer Slapped with $11.2bn Fine


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In a body-blow to spammers, US-based Internet service provider - CIS Internet Services, has been awarded a whopping $11.2 billion in damages, in a judgement against a Florida spammer who allegedly sent millions of unsolicited e-mails to CIS' users.


The latest judgement ruled by US District Judge, Charles R Wolle, on 23 December, 2005, also prohibits spammer McCalla from accessing the Internet for 3 years.



Robert Kramer, owner of CIS, had filed a lawsuit against James McCalla and other defendants in 2003, alleging that over 280 million spam email messages were sent to CIS email accounts. The emails advertised mortgages, debt consolidation services, plus pornographic and gambling Web sites.


Several of the initial defendants named in Kramer's suit, have been dropped in the last couple of years; with judgements totaling over $1 billion issued against Cash Link Systems, AMP Dollar Savings, and TEI Marketing Group.


Kramer said that he is pleased with the latest ruling, and that its a victory for every email user and every responsible ISP. He said that the ruling sets a new standard, and that gross abusers of email risk not only exposure to public ridicule, but also economic death penalty.


Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant, Sophos, welcomed the judgement saying that spam is not just a nuisance for individual computer users, but also for ISPs who are hit in the pocket by having to pay for the band-width to deliver and store hundreds of millions of messages.


However John Mozena, co-founder and vice president, Coalition Against Unsolicited Commercial E-mail (CAUCE), expressed the view that Kramer's lawsuit is unlikely to make a significant dent in the spamming problem. He said what is really required is a federal anti-spam law in USA, akin to that in countries like Australia.

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Supreme Court won't hear spam appeal

By Anne Broache

Staff Writer, CNET News.com


Published: January 9, 2006, 10:00 AM PST


The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to hear an appeal from an online dating service that claimed it had the right to send unsolicited e-mails to thousands of University of Texas e-mail accounts.


In 2003, the University of Texas blocked thousands of unsolicited e-mails sent to its users by White Buffalo Ventures, an Austin, Texas, start-up that specializes in establishing online-dating services for third-party customers. The site in question was LonghornSingles.com, which targets the university's vast student population.


In February 2003, White Buffalo legally obtained a list of all of the university's "nonconfidential, nonexempt" e-mail addresses by filing a Freedom of Information Act request, according to the text of a federal appeals court opinion (click here for .pdf) released in August.



Soon thereafter, the University of Texas received several complaints by students receiving "unsolicited e-mail blasts" from the company, according to court filings. Citing its Board of Regents' general policy against solicitation, the university ordered the spamming to stop. When White Buffalo didn't listen, the university had its IP addresses blocked.


White Buffalo responded with a lawsuit, alleging that the federal Can-Spam Act pre-empted the university's policy and that blocking its IP addresses violated the company's First Amendment right to free speech.


A federal trial court in Western Texas sided with the university, and a three-judge panel at the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld that ruling in August.


The appeals court also concluded that the Can-Spam Act wasn't intended to prevent Internet service providers, including those run by public universities, from filtering spam--though the court did suggest that the University of Texas could have taken narrower steps to do so. The case appeared to be the first to address that aspect of Can-Spam.


Neither the university nor White Buffalo Ventures could be immediately reached for comment Monday.

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My address is pretty much spam free till as of late. I got one SOB that got my address and I've done replied and told him remove me or I'll remove myself but has not helped :w00t:

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I found a great solution to keep spam away. I signed-up for two email accounts at Zoemail about 18 months ago and in that time I have not had ANY spam. There are no whitelists, blacklists or filters to set up nor is there a need for people who email you to respond to confirmation letters. One of the best things about it is you have the ability to know who it is who has given you email address out if you should receive spam and you have the ability to cut that spam off, again without any lists or filters. You might want to go there and check it out for yourself.


If you have any questions please ask me and I will do my best to answer them.

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