one of the top spammers was arrested yesterday. for those in the high-tech biz, I’m sure champagne bottles were popping open worldwide. this guy was not only a nuisance, but a smug ass creep forging your info to send out his nonsense, even to you.
I actually talked to him several times. the one thing that stands out is how he stated with the utmost confidence, “the feds can’t stop him, he can do what he wants and will never stop spamming”.
well, now he can have all the spam he wants – IN PRISON. MUAHAHAHAHAHA
when I received a text alert that a top spammer had been arrested, my first thought was if it ain’t Soloway, it ain’t the top one! I looked up the story, and fell the h-e-double-hockey-sticks out when I saw his name. I remember talking with Seattle agencies, including his local police department, a couple of years ago. all they could do was document the problem at that point. and all I could do was keep sending in the spam info.
and Soloway certainly supplied me with enough evidence. you block the info via spam filter, he forces his way around it to ensure you see his email. you opt out, he ignores request.
and I wasn’t the only one. many network admins were beyond fed up and were doing the same things I was.
well, it was all worth it. :o)
Updated: 7:45 p.m. ET May 31, 2007
One of world’s top 10 spammers arrested
Feds say computer users will notice decrease in junk e-mail following arrest
The Associated Press
SEATTLE – A 27-year-old man described as one of the world’s most prolific spammers was arrested Wednesday, and federal authorities said computer users across the Web could notice a decrease in the amount of junk e-mail.
Robert Alan Soloway is accused of using networks of compromised “zombie” computers to send out millions upon millions of spam e-mails.
“He’s one of the top 10 spammers in the world,” said Tim Cranton, a Microsoft Corp. lawyer who is senior director of the company’s Worldwide Internet Safety Programs. “He’s a huge problem for our customers. This is a very good day.”
(MSNBC.com is a Microsoft-NBC Universal joint venture.)
A federal grand jury last week returned a 35-count indictment against Soloway charging him with mail fraud, wire fraud, e-mail fraud, aggravated identity theft and money laundering.
Soloway pleaded not guilty Wednesday afternoon to all charges after a judge determined that – even with four bank accounts seized by the government – he was sufficiently well off to pay for his own lawyer.
He has been living in a ritzy apartment and drives an expensive Mercedes convertible, said prosecutor Kathryn Warma. Prosecutors are seeking to have him forfeit $773,000 they say he made from his business, Newport Internet Marketing Corp.
A public defender who represented him for Wednesday’s hearing declined to comment.
Prosecutors say Soloway used computers infected with malicious code to send out millions of junk e-mails since 2003. The computers are called “zombies” because owners typically have no idea their machines have been infected.
He continued his activities even after Microsoft won a $7 million civil judgment against him in 2005 and the operator of a small Internet service provider in Oklahoma won a $10 million judgment, prosecutors said.
U.S. Attorney Jeff Sullivan said Wednesday that the case is the first in the country in which federal prosecutors have used identity theft statutes to prosecute a spammer for taking over someone else’s Internet domain name. Soloway could face decades in prison, though prosecutors said they have not calculated what guideline sentencing range he might face.
The investigation began when the authorities began receiving hundreds of complaints about Soloway, who had been featured on a list of known spammers kept by The Spamhaus Project, an international anti-spam organization.
‘Way beyond a nuisance’
The Santa Barbara County, Calif., Department of Social Services said it was spending $1,000 a week to fight the spam it was receiving, and other businesses and individuals complained of having their reputations damaged when it appeared spam was originating from their computers.
“This is not just a nuisance. This is way beyond a nuisance,” Warma said.
Soloway used the networks of compromised computers to send out unsolicited bulk e-mails urging people to use his Internet marketing company to advertise their products, authorities said.
People who clicked on a link in the e-mail were directed to his Web site. There, Soloway advertised his ability to send out as many as 20 million e-mail advertisements over 15 days for $495, the indictment said.
The Spamhaus Project rejoiced at his arrest.
“Soloway has been a long-term nuisance on the Internet – both in terms of the spam he sent, and the people he duped to use his spam service,” organizers wrote on Spamhaus.org.
Soloway remained in federal detention pending a hearing Monday.
© 2007 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
the big question is where are these idiots who actually purchased his service?? and how can I sell them clues for $495 a pop?? his customers, who received nothing in return, contributed to his luxury life, while we were forced to deal with his nonsense at our expense and time. but this is living proof that people are dying to get their products advertised even through scum, which means there’s an opportunity for some sort of legitimate internet marketing company for legal products, kind of like a youtube or myspace just for advertisements. because pop-ups, pop-unders, and spam ain’t gonna cut it. the most popular things sold via spam are illegal products (drugs, counterfeit goods, porn, etc.).