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Follow Australia!

2004-07-19 00:00:00 UTC, by Steve Linford
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United Nations - World Summit on the Information Society
International Telecommunication Union (ITU)
Geneva, Switzerland

The message conveyed by the UN spam conference to the delegates from 60 countries was clear, spam in July was 76% of all email, is now costing national economies US$25 Billion a year, the problem continues to accelerate, spam gangs are becoming ever more aggressive, existing legislation is not working.

But Spamhaus executives at the UN conference had welcome news for the Australian delegation: Spamhaus is seeing a reduction in activity by the known Australian spammers. In fact, since the introduction of Australia's strong anti-spam law - the world's best anti-spam law to date - Australian spammers have been keeping a low profile, many appear to have almost ceased activities and at least one is known to have left the country. The Australian anti-spam law, is working.

Australia's strong opt-in anti-spam law which came into effect on 10 April 2004, enforced by the Australian Communications Authority, provides for penalties of $1.1 million a day for professional spammers. "We're going to come down on spammers like a ton of bricks" Australia's Communications Minister Richard Alston said in late 2003, and many Australian spammers it seems have got the message.

So with spam activity fast accelerating in other countries, moreso in the U.S. following the introduction of the disastrous CAN-SPAM Act which has legalized opt-out spamming instead of banning it, governments looking to get it right and implement effective legislation need look in one direction only - Follow Australia!

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