FTC: blame foreigners for spam

Thursday, 12 June 2003, 3:09 PM EST

Listening to the Federal Trade Commission, one easily can get the impression that deceptive e-mail is downright un-American, since so much of it comes from places like Nigeria, Canada and Russia.

That's why the top consumer watchdog agency is asking Congress for expanded power to pursue foreign spammers, among other requests.

This week, the FTC requested an extension of authority to work more intensively with foreign governments in fraud investigations. In a prepared statement, the agency maintained that such powers "would help the FTC fight deceptive spam by allowing the commission to investigate more fully spam originating from outside the United States."

The agency proposal, presented Wednesday before subcommittees of the Senate and the House of Representatives, also would permit the FTC to obtain records about suspected spammers, without the spammer being informed.

The request for expanded powers comes as escalating complaints about spam is putting pressure on the commission to come up with ways to crack down on junk e-mailers.

[ Read more ]

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