RealTime IT News

Spam Recycling Center Turns Over 150,000 E-mails to FTC

The Spam Recycling Center (SRC) delivered a database of 150,000 unsolicited commercial e-mail messages to Congressman Gary Miller (R-CA) and the Federal Trade Commission in an effort to encourage a ban on spam and to help the FTC track down and prosecute e-mail con artists.

The messages were collected from Netizens over the past two months at the SRC Web site, a public education and anti-spam awareness effort sponsored by ChooseYourMail.com, the Coalition Against Unsolicited Commercial Email , the Forum for Responsible and Ethical Email and SAFEeps.

"The overwhelming consumer response to the Recycling Center and the questionable nature of the spams we've received tells me that the spam problem is growing," said Ian Oxman, president of ChooseYourMail.com.

"Between the get-rich-quick schemes, the invitations to pornographic sites, and the potential dissemination of computer viruses, spam is turning 'buyer beware' into 'run for your life.' Consumers shouldn't have to fear opening their e-mail boxes and that is why we are supporting Rep. Gary Miller's Can Spam Act," Oxman said

ChooseYourMail's preliminary analysis of the SRC spam database indicates that 30.2 percent of the spams collected were promoting pornographic sites.

Another 29.6 percent of the spams were dubious moneymaking proposals including, "surf the net for money", "let your computer work for you" and unspecified "work from home" offers. The most disturbing subset of these "get-rich-quick" solicitations was the 4,200 that sold or promoted spamming as a way to make money on the Web, Oxman said.

"Not only is spam damaging the Internet infrastructure, but it's clearly a favorite advertising vehicle for sleazy and abusive business people," said CAUCE co-founder and vice president John Mozena. "It's the new favorite tool of those who abuse and defraud consumers."

Miller's bill would allow Internet service providers to sue spammers for up to $25,000 a day for unsolicited commercial messages sent through their systems.