Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Spam court case

So, I have a spammer case that is actually going to go to court next month.

The case is clear cut - I was sent an unsolicited marketing email to an email address for which I am an individual subscriber. It is very simple. The email address used is one for which I personally pay Dedicated Programmes. They own the domain and own and operate email servers that provide the email to me, and they also provide email and other communications services to the public making them providers of public communications services. None of the grey areas I am currently discussing with the ICO over emails.

It is hard to see a more clear cut case. I am looking forward to it going to court.

The other side (Deane), have made offers to settle in full, but only if I remove all details from my blog, which is not going to happen. Though it was almost tempting to agree and then post a blog linking to copies of the posts. Anyone else wanting to archive and report the blogs on this guy, please do, and please post comments linking to those copies if they suddenly vanish from my blog. Not likely to happen, but who knows.

He has been aggressive the whole time, even accusing me of fraud. I have a right to claim damages for his apparent criminal breach of the regulations.

The latest amusement is that he claims that he has not received the paperwork, including the copy of the invoice and receipt from DP for the email services. Yet I know he received that by email previously as he replied to it. He claims it was marked as spam, which is odd as, well, he replied, so a tad inconsistent. Now he claims not to have the recorded delivery paper copies of the papers I intend to rely on in court. Royal Mail say they carded him and have them for collection. Even providing the RM reference, he claims not to be able to get it! Strange how, when I put the reference in to the RM website I have the option to request redelivery. Why can't he do that? Clearly he is just being difficult for the sake of it, in my opinion.

Well, I have done my bit and paid to post it to him and have proof of that - I really cannot see it being sensible to humour him any more by either emailing or posting stuff again, at expense of my time and money. He already stated that he wants to waste my time and money on this.

Anyway, court paperwork here, any comments, let me know. Maybe he'll read the paperwork here...

His only defence was that the regulations do not apply to B2B emails. I get the impression someone took him to court before who was not an individual subscriber and lost. Pity for him that is not the case here.

P.S. It is worth pointing out that as this is small claims track, if I lose this case, I get to pay his travel from Weymouth and that is it - not the threatened lawyers fees or other costs, a small amount, which will be a very low cost for any sort of training course on the legal system in the UK. It is hard to see how I would lose, but if I do we will all learn a valuable lesson and my blog will be enriched with the details.


  1. Your post advocates a

    ( ) technical (x) legislative ( ) market-based ( ) vigilante

    approach to fighting spam. Your idea will hopefully work.

    Here is why might work. (One or more of the following may apply to your particular idea)

    ( ) Spammers can easily use it to harvest email addresses
    ( ) Mailing lists and other legitimate email uses would be affected
    (X) We should be able to find the guy and collect the money.
    ( ) It is defenseless against brute force attacks
    ( ) It will stop spam for two weeks and then we'll be stuck with it
    ( ) Users of email will not put up with it
    ( ) Microsoft will not put up with it
    ( ) The police will not put up with it
    ( ) Requires too much cooperation from spammers
    ( ) Requires immediate total cooperation from everybody at once
    ( ) Many email users cannot afford to lose business or alienate potential employers
    ( ) Spammers don't care about invalid addresses in their lists
    ( ) Anyone could anonymously destroy anyone else's career or business

    Specifically, your plan hopefully accounts for

    ( ) Laws expressly prohibiting it
    ( ) Lack of centrally controlling authority for email
    ( ) Open relays in foreign countries
    ( ) Ease of searching tiny alphanumeric address space of all email addresses
    (X) Asshats
    () Jurisdictional problems
    ( ) Unpopularity of weird new taxes
    ( ) Public reluctance to accept weird new forms of money
    ( ) Huge existing software investment in SMTP
    ( ) Susceptibility of protocols other than SMTP to attack
    ( ) Willingness of users to install OS patches received by email
    ( ) Armies of worm riddled broadband-connected Windows boxes
    ( ) Eternal arms race involved in all filtering approaches
    ( ) Extreme profitability of spam
    ( ) Joe jobs and/or identity theft
    ( ) Technically illiterate politicians
    ( ) Extreme stupidity on the part of people who do business with spammers
    (X) Dishonesty on the part of spammers themselves
    ( ) Bandwidth costs that are unaffected by client filtering
    ( ) Outlook

    and the following philosophical objections may also apply:

    ( ) Ideas similar to yours are easy to come up with, yet none have ever
    been shown practical
    ( ) Any scheme based on opt-out is unacceptable
    ( ) SMTP headers should not be the subject of legislation
    ( ) Blacklists suck
    ( ) Whitelists suck
    ( ) We should be able to talk about Viagra without being censored
    ( ) Countermeasures should not involve wire fraud or credit card fraud
    ( ) Countermeasures should not involve sabotage of public networks
    ( ) Countermeasures must work if phased in gradually
    ( ) Sending email should be free
    ( ) Why should we have to trust you and your servers?
    ( ) Incompatiblity with open source or open source licenses
    ( ) Feel-good measures do nothing to solve the problem
    ( ) Temporary/one-time email addresses are cumbersome
    ( ) I don't want the government reading my email
    (X) Killing them that way is not slow and painful enough

    Furthermore, this is what I think about you:

    (X) Go for it dude! :)
    ( ) Sorry dude, but I don't think it would work.
    ( ) This is a stupid idea, and you're a stupid person for suggesting it.
    ( ) Nice try, assh0le! I'm going to find out where you live and burn your
    house down!

  2. Adrian, I live not far from Dorchester. I could hand-deliver these documents one evening in the week if that'd help. Only downside is it'd be around 19:00

    Weekend delivery is also an option.

    1. Too helpful, this is a spammer after all.

  3. Is it wise publishing your home address on your blog? You might get a stalker, or worse, someone who wants you to fix their computer...

  4. It is on companies house, so not secret.