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Four Held in Charges of Spamming US Universities

In charges of e-mail spamming, a federal court in Missouri, US, has summoned four persons including a Chinese, Liu Guang Ming, and three US residents, Paul Zucker, Osmaan Ahmad Shah and his brother Amir Ahmad Shah.

According to the US Justice Department, Shah brothers supposedly created programs for extracting e-mails, which were then used to illicitly yield over 8 Million e-mail addresses. The database of addresses developed this way is then used to circulate spam, selling several services and products to the students of different universities.

Further, as a part of their strategy, Shah brothers used fake and misguiding information in those bogus e-mails, wherein they claimed themselves to be associated with the college or university. They reaped money from such spam campaigns in either of the two modes: by purchasing large quantities of products and thereafter selling out them, or by means of earning referral fee to send spam for services and products which the others had sold.

Liu has been indicted to rent the brothers access to the network of 40 servers, which was controlled by him in China to host websites and circulate spam e-mails.

Besides, Liu served as a network administrator in China and actively worked towards keeping his phishing websites in operation. On the other hand, Zucker circulated spam for the products owned by him and collaborated with the brothers while they were renting space on the servers of Liu in China.

US Attorney Matt Whitworth informed that approximately every American university and college was affected by this spamming campaign, as reported by STRAIT TIMES on April 30, 2009. This spam drive reportedly targeted in excess of 2,000 American colleges, stated the Justice Department.

Matt also said that spamming and illicit hacking cause a huge destruction to the computer networks. Affected schools and colleges spent huge amounts to fix the damage as well as to deploy expensive preventive measures so as to protect themselves from future damages.

Meanwhile, it's noteworthy that in 2003, the US Senate banned the large scale circulation of unsolicited commercial e-mails. Thus, according to law, these four accused persons can be sentenced with imprisonment and may be imposed with heavy fines.

Related article: Free Web Host Services: spammer’s bull’s eye

» SPAMfighter News - 5/6/2009

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