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Doug's Mailbag: Handing Down Spammer Punishment

Last week Doug turned to you for opinions on how spammers should be punished. Here are some reader responses:

I believe the proper punishment for these spambot net operators is to have them open, close and delete one of their messages for each of the copies that they sent. No multiple deletes either. Each one must be opened, closed and then deleted. Figure after they do that a few billion times that they'll get the message. I'd suggest giving them an old pc with Microsoft's minimum ram suggestion for whatever infected pc they get to use.
- Michael

The real problem is developing the technology to find them in the first place. In spite of TV shows and hysteria about DOJ,  FBI and Carnivore, we can't reliably locate spammers and their systems.

As for their punishment, the same should apply to convicted hackers and DDoS-ers, as well: we retain appropriate jail time. Fines already exist, but we add a large civil fine based on estimates of public time and bandwidth taken up. Use the money to fund anti-hacking agencies.

As further deterrent, hit them where they live. Take what they love. Barrier their tools of destruction. For five years after release from prison, they wear large, powerful neodymium or electromagnets on their wrists -- much like tracking anklets --that will scramble any electronic media they approach. Who will hire them for computer work with that little attachment? They may not be able to find work at McDonald's.  It'll get them tossed out of video game arcades. Would they even be able to drive a modern vehicle? If mega-magnets won't cripple their computer use, some other electronic attachment/device should be developed to foil their computer use.

For the creators of any kind of software product that creates spam, havoc or harm to others -- the death penalty. No free room and board, no "understanding" their upbringing, just eliminate the creators of chaos!
- Anonymous

Do with them like AIG did with the guy who lost $12 billion in 8 months -- give them millions in bailouts and put them on the payroll to explain how they did it.

Pay-per-view public execution!

Spammers should be basted with honey and then thrown into a nest of fire ants.  Preferably a colony that has one ant for each spam message that could be traced back to them.

I can't describe how much I loathe these slimy scum-suckers, or relate how much time, productivity and money has been lost dealing with their bullsh*t.  A few weeks ago one of my mail servers was slammed hard with DNR bounces and there was little I could do to stop it.  My subsequent Facebook status for the day was: "Dante reserved the ninth, frozen circle of hell for betrayers. Apparently he never met a spammer..."

Share your thoughts with the editors of this newsletter! Write to [email protected] Letters printed in this newsletter may be edited for length and clarity, and will be credited by first name only (we do NOT print last names or e-mail addresses).

Posted by Doug Barney on 03/22/2010 at 1:17 PM


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