Thursday, July 15, 2010

Feds: Columbia college-spam operation made $4.1 million



Two brothers are accused of running a huge spam operation in Columbia, targeting about 8 million college students with ads for tooth whiteners, iPods and other goods. Yesterday, a codefendant, 57-year-old Paul Zucker of New Jersey, pleaded guilty to giving spam software and providing proxy servers so Amir and Osmaan Shah could do business.

Here's a PDF of the indictment. It's a little long, 59 pages, but it's kind of interesting to see how they could carry this out. The Shahs are accused of illegally acquiring email addresses for all of those college students and -- for a time -- using Mizzou's own system to send the spam.

If you were wondering who replies to those stupid messages, I'm sad to report that someone does. The feds allege the Shahs made more than $4.1 million.

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