Feeds

Facebook awarded $711m in 'Spamford' Wallace case

Expects to receive almost nothing

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Facebook has been awarded $711 million in damages against the infamous junk mail merchant, Sanford "Spamford" Wallace, who gained access to numerous accounts on the social website and sent phony messages to their friends.

"While we don't expect to receive the vast majority of the award, we hope that this will act as a continued deterrent against these criminals," said Facebook counsel Sam O'Rourke in a blog post.

Wallace and two business associates broke into Facebook accounts using phishing email scams in order to plaster inboxes and wall posts of the victim's friends to promote porn and gambling sites.

"The record demonstrates that Wallace willfully violated the statutes in question with blatant disregard for the rights of Facebook and thousands of Facebook users whose accounts were compromised by his conduct," US District Judge Jeremy Fogel in San Jose, California said in a court order.

Facebook had asked for more than $7bn in damages in the case, but Fogel ruled he was not persuaded that the amount was proportionate to Wallace's offenses. He instead lowered the damages to a still very tidy sum of $710,737,650.

The lawsuit claimed Wallace, who didn't formally appear in the action, was responsible for 14,214,753 violations of the CAN-SPAM Act. The social website said it would not pursue a case against Wallace's alleged associates, Adam Arzoomanian and Scott Shaw.

Facebook said the judgment is the second largest in history for an action brought under the US Can-Spam Act — the largest being a $873m judgment Facebook won against Canadian spammer Adam Guerbuez in 2008.

Judge Fogel also issued a permanent injunction against Wallace from accessing Facebook and referred Wallace to the US Attorney's Office with a request he be prosecuted for criminal contempt. ®

Remote control for virtualized desktops

More from The Register

next story
Regin: The super-spyware the security industry has been silent about
NSA fingered as likely source of complex malware family
Why did it take antivirus giants YEARS to drill into super-scary Regin? Symantec responds...
FYI this isn't just going to target Windows, Linux and OS X fans
Privacy bods offer GOV SPY VICTIMS a FREE SPYWARE SNIFFER
Looks for gov malware that evades most antivirus
Patch NOW! Microsoft slings emergency bug fix at Windows admins
Vulnerability promotes lusers to domain overlords ... oops
HACKERS can DELETE SURVEILLANCE DVRS remotely – report
Hikvision devices wide open to hacking, claim securobods
'Regin': The 'New Stuxnet' spook-grade SOFTWARE WEAPON described
'A degree of technical competence rarely seen'
Astro-boffins start opening universe simulation data
Got a supercomputer? Want to simulate a universe? Here you go
You stupid BRICK! PCs running Avast AV can't handle Windows fixes
Fix issued, fingers pointed, forums in flames
prev story

Whitepapers

Driving business with continuous operational intelligence
Introducing an innovative approach offered by ExtraHop for producing continuous operational intelligence.
Why CIOs should rethink endpoint data protection in the age of mobility
Assessing trends in data protection, specifically with respect to mobile devices, BYOD, and remote employees.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Protecting against web application threats using SSL
SSL encryption can protect server‐to‐server communications, client devices, cloud resources, and other endpoints in order to help prevent the risk of data loss and losing customer trust.