Feeds

Spamhaus fights US court 'pro-spammer' ruling

Change of tack

Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL

Spamhaus has switched legal tack and decide to appeal an $11.7m judgment against it by a US court obtained by a firm it labelled a spammer. The London-based anti-spam organisation had argued that the court has no jurisdiction over it, but the threat of domain seizure has forced it to take action.

In a default ruling made by a US court last month, Spamhaus was ordered to pay $11.7m in compensation to e360 Insight, pull the organisation's listing and post a notice stating that it was wrong to say e360 Insight was involved in sending junk mail. Spamhaus did not defend the case and the ruling was made in its absence.

The voluntary organisation ignored the Illinois court on principle, amid concern that fielding a defence might open it up to a barrage of nuisance lawsuits by spammers aggrieved that its activities are frustrating their ability to deliver junk mail. It continues to maintain that it was right to describe e360 Insight as a spam operation. If you think we're wrong, then sue us in Britain, Spamhaus initially said.

e360 Insight responded by upping the ante and calling on the Illinios court to order domain registrars to suspend Spamhaus's domain, Spamhaus.org. If carried through, this would have resulted in a huge volume of spam hitting email servers. The draft order called on either internet governance body ICANN or Canadian registrar Tucows to suspend the spamhaus.org domain. ICANN washed its hands of the affair by saying it didn't have the authority to pull Spamhaus's domain. In any case the order has yet to be signed by the judge.

But, e360 Insight's aggressive legal moves have prompted Spamhaus to switch strategy. Spamhaus has now filed an appeal against the original default judgment against it. US law firm Jenner and Block is representing Spamhaus in the case.

In an updated statement on e360 Insight's lawsuit, Spamhaus said it intends to "contest the ruling in order to stamp out further attempts by spammers to abuse the US court system". e360 Insight's rather different take on the case can be found here.

The cases has sparked a lively debate on the net with some deriding the court's decision while other, such as law professor Matthew Prince, commenting that Spamhaus has been ill-advised in its handling of the case. ®

The next step in data security

More from The Register

next story
Israeli spies rebel over mass-snooping on innocent Palestinians
'Disciplinary treatment will be sharp and clear' vow spy-chiefs
Infosec geniuses hack a Canon PRINTER and install DOOM
Internet of Stuff securo-cockups strike yet again
THREE QUARTERS of Android mobes open to web page spy bug
Metasploit module gobbles KitKat SOP slop
'Speargun' program is fantasy, says cable operator
We just might notice if you cut our cables
Apple Pay is a tidy payday for Apple with 0.15% cut, sources say
Cupertino slurps 15 cents from every $100 purchase
YouTube, Amazon and Yahoo! caught in malvertising mess
Cisco says 'Kyle and Stan' attack is spreading through compromised ad networks
Hackers pop Brazil newspaper to root home routers
Step One: try default passwords. Step Two: Repeat Step One until success
Greater dev access to iOS 8 will put us AT RISK from HACKERS
Knocking holes in Apple's walled garden could backfire, says securo-chap
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.