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Email spammer fined $16 million by Federal Trade Commission

US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has fined a 26-year old New Zealand man, named Lance Atkinson, $16 million for running the world’s largest spam operation, dubbed AffKing. Atkinson had previously admitted sending spam and was fined $100,000 by a New Zealand court, but the FTC saw that further punishment was due.

US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has fined a 26-year old New Zealand man, named Lance Atkinson, $16 million for running the world’s largest spam operation, dubbed AffKing. Atkinson had previously admitted sending spam and was fined $100,000 by a New Zealand court, but the FTC saw that further punishment was due.

It is believed that Lance Atkinson along with an American named Jody Smith had recruited spammers from around the world who sent billions of emails directing recipients to websites advertising bogus male enhancement drugs and weight loss pills shipped from India, which they falsely claimed had come from a licensed pharmacy in US.

Atkinson and Smith allegedly controlled a ‘botnet’ of 35,000 computers, capable of sending 10 billion email messages a day. Servers in China hosted the websites and the drugs were shipped from India, while operatives in Cyprus and the former Soviet republic of Georgia processed credit card information, reports Sydney Morning Herald.

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