US anti-spam laws 'will legalise spam'

Wednesday, 2 July 2003, 6:49 AM EST

Proposed US legislation designed to clamp down on the spam is only likely to make the problem far worse, according to a leading anti-spam activist.

Steve Linford, founder and director of the UK-based Spamhaus Project, a non-profit organisation that tracks the activities of the world's biggest spammers, warned that legislation currently going through congress would lend legitimacy to bulk mailing.

"The legislation Congress is considering would legalise opt-out spamming," Linford argued. "All the US spammers we track support the Bill because it means they wouldn't have to hide any more."

"If the US passes an opt-out law, which I believe is likely to happen by the start of next year, the spam problem would explode. Providing they don't use deceptive subject lines any one of 23 million small US business could begin spamming," he added.

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