The CAN-SPAM bill examined
Posted Nov 26, 2003 3:39 UTC (Wed) by zone
Parent article: The CAN-SPAM bill examined
> CAN-SPAM also makes it illegal to for spammers to use open relays or other methods of hijacking computers to send spam, and requires a working method to opt-out of e-mail. Again, these provisions are unlikely to deter offshore spammers, but the provisions are welcome nonetheless.
The requirement of an opt-out method is a nice loophole for the government and ISPs to be able to prosecute spammers who are otherwise legitimate businesses sending now explictly legal email. However, it would be a tragedy if 'Just click the opt-out link when you get spam, it's illegal for them to keep sending you spam after you do that' becomes common knowledge. Even if you assume (made up statistics) that 25% of spam originates in the US and 50% of that compiles with the opt-out provision, that'd still mean 7/8 of the opt-out links put your email address on the known-good and known-reader lists.
In my experience, users were really catching on that spam should be disregarded entirely. Lets hope sys. admins reinforce the 'don't reply to spam, ever' mantra around the office. And lets home the press catches on as well: a slew of 'Spammers required to honor opt-out' headlines could set us back five years in five days.
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