ISPs Sue Spammers
America Online, EarthLink, Microsoft and Yahoo announced last week what they said are the first industry lawsuits against spammers since the federal CAN-SPAM Act took effect in January.
The groups six suits, filed in four federal courts, target "hundreds of the most notorious spammers on the Internet," said AOL spokesman Nicholas Graham in a conference call.
The complaints, filed in California, Georgia, Virginia and Washington, charge defendants with allegedly sending hundreds of millions of spam e-mail messages to customers of the four networks.
Practices mentioned in the suits include "deceptive solicitations for a variety of products"; use of open proxies, which disguise the origin of e-mail by routing it through third-party computers; using fake "From" e-mail addresses, known as spoofing; and omitting a physical address or an unsubscribe option.