Judge Awards ISP $1bn in Spam Case

eWeek is reporting on what is thought to be the largest federal judgment against spammers in history. CIS Internet Services has been awarded damages to the sum of $1bn. Judge Wolle ruled that CIS were being harmed by the sending of un-solicited emails by these companies. He ruled that they had broken the law under the Federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act and the Iowa Ongoing Criminal Conduct Act.

Kramer, owner of CIS, described the resolution as "a victory for all of us that open up our e-mail and find lewd and malicious and fraudulent e-mail in our boxes every day''. The judgement was based on a cost of $10 per spam message; it's thought unlikely that Kramer will ever be able to get the $1bn from the spam companies. The resolution hands down large fines against the three main offenders, none of which responded to contact, or were present at a bench trial in November of this year.

Kramer's 9 year old company provides email services for users in Clinton. According to court documents, he noticed a rise in spam on his network in 2000, and at one point saw as many as 10 million spam messages a day. CIS Internet Services user's were especially vulnerable as many of their email addresses were listed on a widely available spam CD – "Bulk Mailing 4 Dummies" – which gives simple advice to would be spammers on how to get started. It is hoped that the judgement will send a strong message to companies who persist in sending users unwanted messages.

View: CIS Internet Services

View: Forum Discussion, Info from the son of CIS owner

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