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ACMA Unleashes SpamMATTERS - the New Anti-Spam Button

The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) have launched a system to fight spam, the most offensive four-letter word in cyberspace. The system, SpamMATTERS, will help ACMA to track down spammers by providing a simple, one click method for the public to make reports about these malicious messages. Unsolicited mail is forwarded to a database and deleted from the user’s computer at the click of a button. SpamMATTERS is a customer friendly spam reporting button that enables users to report and delete spam email simultaneously in a single click. The button is currently available as a plug-in for Microsoft Outlook and Outlook Express. Telstra has also made a version of SpamMATTERS button available to its Telstra.com and BigPond WebMail customers. ACMA also plans to contact other Australian Internet Service Providers to seek their assistance in promoting SpamMATTERS among email users. Email security company MX Logic estimated that 67 per cent of all email sent worldwide last year was accounted as spam. Nerida O'Loughlin of ACMA claims that the new system allows the user to dispose of these unwanted mails quickly. According to ACMA, about 10 per cent of spams sent are phishing spam that attempts to steal users' banking details and other vital personal information. ACMA will send all the information obtained about malicious spam to authorities such as the Australian High Tech Crime Centre and the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission. Bruce Matthews, ACMA’s anti-spam team manager, said that this new tool will give more forensic evidence during spam fighting as he expects the program to "significantly increase" the amount of information ACMA collects about spam creators. Under ’s anti-spam legislation Spam Act 2003, individuals and businesses can be prosecuted with a maximum penalty of $10 million. Any person found guilty of sending spam can be slapped a $200,000 fine for a first offence and more than $1million for serial spamming. ACMA is not new to anti-spam campaigns; it was involved in the prosecution of a Perth-based company and its managing director for sending at least 56 million unsolicited commercial emails. Users can download the ACMA SpamMATTERS from the ACMA website. General information about reporting spam can also be obtained from the ACMA website, www.acma.gov.au.

Related article: Asian Earthquake Possibly Dropped Spam Levels

» SPAMfighter News - 6/2/2006

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