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It's a start: Spammer gets jail time

There have been a few high profile penalties against spammers of late, but they all lack one key ingredient--jail time.To wit:MySpace plays more spam Whac-a-Mole; Wins $6 million settlementMySpace’s $230 million spam win: Will it really be a deterrent?
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Written by Larry Dignan on

There have been a few high profile penalties against spammers of late, but they all lack one key ingredient--jail time.

To wit:

But there are no spammers in the slammer. That may be changing (I hope).

Reuters reports that a Brooklyn man was sentenced to 30 months in prison for sending spam to 1.2 million subscribers of AOL. According to Reuters:

Adam Vitale, 27, was sentenced in federal court in Manhattan after pleading guilty more than a year ago to breaking anti-spam laws. He was also ordered to pay $180,000 to AOL in restitution.

Vitale was caught making a deal with a government informant to send junk e-mails -- known as spam -- that advertised a computer security program in return for 50 percent of the product's profits, prosecutors said.

Now let's get real: Vitale was a small-time spammer. After all, the real big guns are out of the U.S. But it's a start. With any luck some of the big spam kings will be taking a perp walk in the not too distant future. I'd much rather hear about a spammer doing jail time than large settlements where the funds will never be collected.

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