by CIO Staff

Spammer Ordered to Pay EarthLink $11M

Sep 14, 20062 mins
IT LeadershipMalware

A U.S. district court judge has awarded Internet service provider EarthLink US$11.6 million in a lawsuit accusing Nevada Internet marketer KSTM of sending millions of unwanted mortgage-related e-mails.

Judge Timothy Batten of the U.S. District Court of the Northern District of Georgia awarded EarthLink the money on Aug. 31 after KSTM failed to respond to the ISP’s lawsuit. EarthLink accused the company and other defendants of violating the U.S. CAN-SPAM Act, as well as the U.S. Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, the Georgia Computer Systems Protection Act, and state and federal racketeering laws.

EarthLink showed that KSTM’s violation of the CAN-SPAM Act was “knowing and willful,” Batten wrote in his judgment. As part of the award, Batten awarded EarthLink $776 in lost profits and damage to its reputation “arising out of KSTM’s illegal campaign of spam e-mail” directed at the company’s network, the judge wrote.

KSTM sent e-mail promoting the website, EarthLink said. The company used false and misleading header information in its e-mail, violating the CAN-SPAM Act, EarthLink said in its lawsuit, filed in October 2004.

“This judgment should be fair warning that if you spam, we will sue,” said Larry Slovensky, assistant general counsel for EarthLink, in a statement.

Since 1996, EarthLink has sued hundreds of spammers and won more than $200 million in judgments, including two criminal convictions against spammers who received prison sentences, the company said.

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