RealNews

Microsoft Hunts Out Hotmail Spammers

Microsoft is turning up the heat on spam, filing a lawsuit to go after people it suspects of having harvested email addresses from its Hotmail servers to spam subscribers. Microsoft on Thursday filed a so-called ‘John Doe’ suit in a California federal court. The suit doesn’t name defendants, but allows the plaintiff the power to issue subpoenas as part of the investigative phase of the trial. The defendants are accused of using a “dictionary attack” to discover active Hotmail accounts. A dictionary attack is one in which a computer program goes through every entry in a dictionary in an attempt to guess passwords. In this case, the program guessed millions of random e-mail addresses to see which ones were active, Microsoft alleged. Microsoft filed the suit the same week it called on legislators to pass laws forbidding the practice of spam-address harvesting. Full Story

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