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Microsoft’s Victory Over Porn Spam Sets Example

Microsoft had filed a suit against a German spammer for forging pornographic e-mail under the guise of Microsoft's hotmail.com domain. Microsoft has come out as a winner in the case. The 'regional appeals court' in Karlsruhe, Germany proved the person responsible for delivering unsolicited e-mail via Microsoft's 'trademark protected' Hotmail account without the permission of the company. The name of the spammer was not disclosed who was sending out spam to campaign his pornographic website for many months until the German court forced a break.
Microsoft had launched a complaint against an anonymous German company in the North Rhine - Westphalia region of Germany including its managing director. The software giant accused the company of sending millions of spam mails presenting website design, online casinos and pornography.

According to Microsoft, the company belonged to a larger spam gang conducting its operations from Ukraine and the U.S. It seems the managing director was in the U.S. several times where he developed a network of contacts. He had been carrying out 'spam for sale' sites and a 'business-renting servers', which he named "bulk mailers" for the advantage of spam companies. A firm by paying just $625 per month could get enough server space to dispatch 74 million e-mails.

The sentence required the convicted spammer to promise not to distribute spam mails using Hotmail client or submit a fine of euros 250,000. Besides this, he must submit to Microsoft the detailed information about his e-mail campaigning particulars.

Since Germany has no anti-spam law, Microsoft regards the 'court ruling' as one of the process to deal with the spammers. As per the ruling, the misappropriation of a brand name in spam is a crime liable for prosecution. Before the existence of such a ruling, German spammers neither faced prosecution nor paid high damage charges.

Microsoft spokesperson called the victory a successful example against alleged spammers and those who make money from illicit advertising. Following this case, Microsoft has filed a sequence of lawsuits against many other spammers hoping that this arrangement will encourage other companies to take action against similar offenders. This could be a benchmark for other companies.

Related article: Microsoft Patches Live OneCare to Tackle Quarantined E-Mails

» SPAMfighter News - 31-10-2006

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