E-mail Registries In Utah, Michigan, Going Live
Similar to the do-not-call lists focused on limiting telemarketing calls, the new registries aim to fight spam.
The well-intentioned measures aimed at protecting children from obscene e-mail probably won't have an impact on junk mail.
The scams and other junk that plague e-mail users primarily come from outside the United States. But the registries won't have any jurisdiction outside the country, meaning only US-based mass mailers will have to be aware of the registries.
According to an AP report, other items like instant message IDs, home and mobile numbers, and pager numbers may be added to those state registries. Businesses will have to purchase copies of the registries, scrub their databases of matching entries, and do that work on an ongoing basis.
"This has caught everybody by surprise. They were passed with much fanfare last July, but since then everybody has forgotten about them," said Anne Mitchell, president and CEO of the Institute for Spam and Internet Public Policy (ISIPP).
Once an e-mail address is on the registry for more than 30 days, commercial e-mailers are prohibited from sending it anything containing or linking to advertising for a product or service that a minor is otherwise legally prohibited from accessing, such as alcohol, tobacco, gambling, prescription drugs, or adult-rated material.
Senders found to be in violation of Utah's law will face up to three years in jail and up to $30,000 in fines, as well as potential civil penalties of $1,000 per message. Violators of Michigan's law face similar fines and jail time, and may be liable to civil penalties of $5,000 per message or $250,000 per day of violation.
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