Förderverein Informationstechnik und Gesellschaft

FC: Virginia criminalizes "Up Yours" mailbombing too

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Date:          Fri, 26 Feb 1999 18:54:25 -0500
From:          Declan McCullagh <>
Subject:       FC: Virginia criminalizes "Up Yours" mailbombing tools

>Date: Wed, 24 Feb 1999 13:40:07 -0500
>From: Jamie McCarthy <>
>Subject: Virginia criminalizes "Up Yours"
>"Up Yours" and a hundred other stupid programs like it are
>mailbombing tools.  Some kid with a half a brain sat down
>and wrote a program to send out a flood of unsolicited mail
>with a forged return address;  it takes advantage of open
>mail servers.
>Yesterday, the Virginia State Legislature passed a law which
>makes spamming a misdemeanor along with the more traditional
>forms of computer theft:  breaking into systems, erasing
>data, and so on.  Oh yes -- and if you distribute software
>which "facilitates" spamming, you are subject to twice the
>penalties:  $1000 per offense, that is, per download of the
>Thousands of ftp sites around the world that happen to host
>"Up Yours" or similar programs will be operated by criminals,
>once the governor signs this into law.  Running an anonymous
>remailer that fails to take steps to eliminate "bulk" mail
>abuse is probably also illegal, since they "falsify" the
>header information.
>The summary:
>   The bill provides for statutory civil damages of at least
>   $500 for each and every illegal and unsolicited bulk
>   electronic mail message transmitted or actual damages,
>   whichever is greater or $1000 for each and every violation
>   of the prohibition on selling or distributing software
>   which makes possible the transmission of false e-mail.
>The law:
>   B. It shall be unlawful for any person to sell, give or
>   otherwise distribute or possess with the intent to sell, give
>   or distribute software which facilitates or enables the
>   falsification of electronic mail header information or other
>   Internet routing information for the purpose of sending
>   unsolicited bulk electronic mail through or into the facilities
>   of an electronic mail service provider or its subscribers.
>The ACLU is challenging the law.
>        Jamie McCarthy

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