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RealTime IT News

ISP Fights Growing Spam Headache

Internet Direct, a major Toronto-based ISP, has filed notice seeking relief from the actions of a bulk e-mailer who has been using the company's services for the unethical practice of sending bulk unsolicited commercial e-mail (BUCE, also known as "spam").

"Our policy is zero-tolerance to BUCE," said Internet Direct President John Nemanic.

"This individual was aware of those policies, and made continual, repetitive attempts to bypass our accounting procedures."

"Each time we found him and removed his access, he would come back under false pretenses, using a series of phony names and different business addresses. It was difficult to track him down."

Internet Direct's information service director, Brandi Jasmine, said that "many people don't realize how serious a problem junk e-mail is for ISPs."

She estimated that 30 percent of Internet Directs incoming e-mail is in the form of unwelcome, unsolicited e-mail, and that in 1998 alone, they spent more than $200,000 fighting junk e-mail.

"We're forced to hire additional staff to deal with complaints, and to over-build our networks to ensure they are safe from the huge volumes of e-mail that spam generates. It's our hope that the courts will want to make a strong statement in this case to deter others from abusing the Internet."