Four major US ISPs - America Online, Earthlink, Microsoft Network and Yahoo - have teamed up to take legal actions against hundreds of alleged spammers.
The move represents a change of tack for the US ISPs which, to date, had favoured taking lawsuits out against small groups of major
spammers, with some degree of success.
This week's mass lawsuits, which were filed in federal courts in
California, Georgia, Virginia and Washington State, also represent the closest degree of co-operation yet seen between the normally rival ISPs.
Earthlink said most of the lawsuits were `John Doe' cases, with
the expectation that lawyers will use subpoenas and other court-
ordered investigations to track down and identify the defendants.
Two of the named defendants are Davis Wolfgang Hawke, aka Dave Bridger, of Medfield, Massachusetts and Braden Bournival of Manchester, New Hampshire.
AOL alleged that these two people, as well as several John Does, were responsible for millions of emails for weight loss dietary
supplements, handheld lie detectors and other products.