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Microsoft To Take Further Legal Action Over Spam

by Glen Shapiro, LawAndTax-News.com, New York

22 December 2003


Software giant, Microsoft and the State of New York have joined forces to combat unsolicited commercial e-mail, filing joint lawsuits in Manhattan and Washington state.

Earlier this year, Microsoft announced that it had filed 15 lawsuits in the US and the UK against alleged spammers, accusing them of flooding its MSN service with more than 2 billion unsolicited e-mails.

Speaking last week, Microsoft general counsel, Brad Smith explained that:

"Deceptive and illegal spam, like the kind we're attacking today, is overwhelming legitimate e-mail and threatening the promise and potential of the internet for all of us."

According to New York's attorney general, Eliot Spitzer, in May and June, Microsoft set "spam traps" attracting 8,000 spam messages which contained more than 40,000 fraudulent statements. These statements form the basis of the lawsuits filed in the State Supreme Court in Manhattan, and in the King County Superior Court in Washington State.

Issuing a dire warning to the spammers targeted by the lawsuits, which are seeking penalties of $500 per fraudulent statement, Mr Spitzer announced that:

"This model of spamming that they have set up will be a money loser. We will drive them into bankruptcy. We have to make it evident that there is no viable business opportunity here."


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