Dutch OPTA Tough on Spam


We all get sick and tired of it: spam, cluttering out mailboxes with useless and more than once even dangerous emails. Worldwide, legislative initiatives are being taken to combat this abuse of internet facilities, which includes fines or even jail terms.

ANP newsservice in the Netherlands reported that a man had been fined EURO 250,000 for by telecom watchdog OPTA upon finding out his firm had been sending out at least 21 million spam messages which resulted in almost 400 complaints via the Dutch spam complaint site Spamklacht (http://www.spamklacht.nl).

The man who has not been named by OPTA, had received a previous warning 4 years ago and now faces an additional EURO 5,000 fine for every day that his company sends out spam. From other news sources it transpired that the owner of Serinco Benelux (http://www.serincobenelux.nl) an Alphen aan de Rijn based software and "internet promo" company, been first warned in 2004 about violating the anti-spamlaws.  In 2007 the Dutch regulator had confiscated evidence during a raid on the man's house and is understood to have received more information about spamming activities more recently.

In an interview with the German Press Agency dpa, the man, understood to be Reinier Schenkhuizen, denied that his company had sent 21 million spam emails and would appeal the decision. Allegedly the OPTA has not understood that emails sent by his clients automatically contained some information about his company because it is integrated in the software.

It is great seeing that a tough stace is being takem against spam. According to some statistics spam is making up around 80% of all the worlds email traffic and wasting about 33 billion kwh of energy a year, enough to power 2.1 million US homes. Other reports claim a well over $800 loss per employee per year as a result of spam. Time to get really tough I would imagine.

Sources:
Dutch News http://www.dutchnews.nl/news/archives/2009/07/spammer_fined_250000.php
Topnews.in: http://www.topnews.in/dutch-telecoms-regulator-fines-spammer-250000-euros-2194590
Guardian: http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2009/apr/15/spam-mcafee-symantec-emails-environment

 

Posted via email from John Dierckx

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