RealNews

FTC Asks Court to Shut Down Spammer's Operation

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) today asked a federal court to block an e-mail operation that allegedly used deceptive methods to lure people, including children, to view sexually explicit material online. The FTC asked the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Eastern Division, to shut down the operation until a trial can be held on charges related to the case. The agency said in a statement that it would seek a permanent injunction against the operation, which is run by Brian Westby of Ballwin, Mo. Westby could not be reached for comment today. In its complaint, the FTC alleged that Westby’s operation used deceptively bland subject lines, false return addresses and empty “reply-to” links to drive business to an adult Web site called Married But Lonely. The subject lines disguised the true nature of the e-mail. For example, consumers received e-mails with subject lines like “Did you hear the news?” and “New movie info.” But when they opened the e-mail messages, they were immediately subjected to sexually explicit solicitations to visit the defendant’s adult-oriented Web sites. Full Story

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