By Dan Goodin in San Francisco
6th May 2010
A small internet service provider has been awarded nearly $2.6m in a
lawsuit it filed against a company that sent just under 25,000 spam
messages over an 18-month period.
Although it's questionable whether Asis Internet Services will ever see
a penny of that windfall, the judgment is testament to the awesome power
of CAN-SPAM, short for the Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited
Pornography and Marketing Act, which was passed by Congress in 2003. It
allows judgments of as much as $100 for every unsolicited email, and
damages can be tripled for a variety of reasons.
The judgment was awarded by Magistrate Judge Elizabeth D. Laporte of the
US District Court in Northern California. It comes in a case filed
against the principals of a business called Find a Quote. A
four-employee ISP in Garberville, California, Asis said it receives
about 200,000 junk messages per day and spends about $3,000 per month to
Laporte calculated that the ISP was entitled to damages of $865,340, but
went on to triple the amount, to 2.596m, because, she said, the Find a
Quote spammers, including defendant Edward Heckerson, had employed
automatic scripts to send their messages.
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