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Yahoo files suit against 'lottery' spammers

Insider BuzzInsider Buzz: Yahoo files suit against 'lottery' spammers

Yahoo Inc. said Tuesday it filed a lawsuit against "Yahoo Lottery" spammers.

The Sunnyvale-based company said the spammers send out e-mail messages trying to make people believe they've won a lottery or prize offered by Yahoo (NASDAQ:YHOO).

The lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York in New York City under the Federal Trademark Act, the Federal CAN-SPAM Act and related state laws.

Yahoo said it does not offer any such awards and has no affiliation or any connection with the spammers or their e-mail communications.

"This type of lottery scam is a hoax designed to trick unsuspecting e-mail users into revealing valuable personal data like passwords, credit card information, and social security numbers," the company said.

Official Yahoo! press release

Yahoo! Files Lawsuit Against "Lottery" Spammers 

SUNNYVALE, Calif., May 27, 2008 (RUSHPRNEWS) — As part of its continued commitment to protect Internet users from e-mail scams, Yahoo! Inc. (Nasdaq:YHOO), a leading global Internet company, today announced the filing of a lawsuit against "Yahoo! Lottery Spammers" for unlawfully sending e-mail messages to Internet users for the purpose of deceiving them into believing that they have won a lottery or prize offered by Yahoo!. The lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York in New York City, under the Federal Trademark Act, the Federal CAN-SPAM Act, and related state laws.

The complaint alleges that without permission or authorization, and with full knowledge and notice of Yahoo!'s trademark rights, the spammers willfully masqueraded as Yahoo!, and sent e-mails claiming that the recipient had won a lottery, prize or other award from Yahoo!. Yahoo! does not offer any such awards and has no affiliation or any connection with the spammers or their e-mail communications. This type of lottery scam is a hoax designed to trick unsuspecting e-mail users into revealing valuable personal data like passwords, credit card information, and social security numbers. Commonly known as a "phishing" scam, in this confidence game, perpetrators typically use the stolen information to access recipients' bank accounts and credit cards, to apply for unauthorized credit cards or loans, or to fraudulently create documents bearing the victims' personal identification and then use or sell it in a wide variety of credit and identity scams. Some of the "winners" are also deceived into sending the defendants money for processing and mailing charges.

"The unauthorized use of Yahoo!'s trademarks is misleading, fraudulent, and has actually confused, misled, and deceived the public. Yahoo! will vigorously enforce its intellectual property rights and will not tolerate lottery hoax emails," said Joe Siino, Senior Vice President, Yahoo! Global IP and Business Strategy.

"Yahoo! is 100% committed to protecting our users from fraudulent e-mail messages and this lawsuit sends a clear message to spammers," said John Kremer, Vice President, Yahoo! Mail. "We are going after individuals who have attempted to negatively impact the e-mail experience for consumers across the Internet. Through our continued litigation efforts, our top goal and priority is to further protect Yahoo! Mail users and the public from this type of fraudulent activity."

Yahoo! takes trademark infringement and the issue of e-mail scams very seriously. This case, as well as previous litigation efforts, are a part of Yahoo!'s multi-faceted approach to fighting spam and e-mail fraud which also includes the use of advanced technologies, industry collaboration, and raising consumer awareness by providing Yahoo! Mail users with detailed tips on how to avoid online scams at http://antispam.yahoo.com. Yahoo! Mail is the most popular Web mail service in the world with more than 260 millions users worldwide(1). Currently, Yahoo! blocks more than 1 billion spam and fraudulent e-mail messages per day from reaching the inboxes of Yahoo! Mail users.

About Yahoo!

Yahoo! Inc. is a leading global Internet brand and one of the most trafficked Internet destinations worldwide. Yahoo! is focused on powering its communities of users, advertisers, publishers, and developers by creating indispensable experiences built on trust. Yahoo! is headquartered in Sunnyvale, California. For more information, visit pressroom.yahoo.com or the company's blog, Yodel Anecdotal.

Lottery Post Staff

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5 comments. Last comment 6 years ago by LckyLary.
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DC81's avatar - batman39
MI
United States
Member #54830
August 31, 2007
977 Posts
Offline
Posted: May 27, 2008, 12:27 pm - IP Logged

I've received these and they go straight to my trash bin. Too bad suing isn't really going to do all that much to stop it, even if they can track the IP addresses of the senders back to the source.

You can't predict random.


    United States
    Member #59167
    March 8, 2008
    174 Posts
    Offline
    Posted: May 27, 2008, 3:25 pm - IP Logged

    If life was a television show, they could find the criminals through an IP search, try them, and sent them off to jail, all within 42 minutes! All we need is sponsors and we could eliminate all crime.  Just like on "Law and Order," give up all the freedoms of the Constitution, and the police will solve every crime known to man  Fight the police and it turns into a two part episode! Bless the sheep!

      Avatar
      Kentucky
      United States
      Member #32652
      February 14, 2006
      5604 Posts
      Offline
      Posted: May 27, 2008, 5:29 pm - IP Logged

      Yahoo didn't try to stop them when they sent emails to Yahoo addresses saying people had won the Australian, UK, South Africa, or any other lotteries they could use to make it look official. It wasn't until the emails said that Yahoo was running the lottery when Yahoo finally decided to do something about it.

      I had an email saying I won a secondary prize in a joint Yahoo-Microsoft lottery sponsored by Jerry Yang and Bill Gates.


        United States
        Member #59167
        March 8, 2008
        174 Posts
        Offline
        Posted: May 29, 2008, 2:36 pm - IP Logged

        Isn't Yahoo the company that, for profit, sold the names and addresses of dissidents to the Communist Chinese government, so they could easily be rounded up and placed in prison?  Why doesn't Yahoo send the problem IP addresses to Communist Chinese and let them "remove" the problem? Thus freeing up our courts!

          Avatar

          United States
          Member #10720
          January 23, 2005
          932 Posts
          Offline
          Posted: May 30, 2008, 10:49 pm - IP Logged

          I should just stick to the Nigerian Lottery.. that one seems pretty easy to win! Or how about the Zimbabwe Lottery, one ticket costs $10 million, the same as the jackpot!