Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

FBI Raids Home of Spam King Alan Ralsky

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 7 years ago | from the click-here-to-enlarge-your-prison-cell dept.

Spam 422

wstearns writes "The Detroit News is reporting that the FBI has raided Alan Ralsky's home. In the raid, the FBI took computers and financial records, effectively shutting him down. Mr. Ralsky has been frequently covered here."

cancel ×

422 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Will I be notified (5, Funny)

dzafez (897002) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804845)

Will I be notified, if they find out I'm a victim??

Hell the guy from nigeria didn't write me for a while, I'll send him an E-Mail. I'm still waiting for a large transaction :-)

Re:Will I be notified (2, Funny)

Coneasfast (690509) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804873)

they just took away his stuff, how lame! he committed a crime and should be punished.

if i was the FBI, i would take those penis enlargment pills and start shoving them up his ass until he begs for mercy.

poor business ethics are ignored so much in todays society that it's hardly considered news anymore.

Re:Will I be notified (0, Troll)

Scarletdown (886459) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804930)

Even more appropriate would be for them to shove all those penis enlargement pills down his throat until his dick explodes.

The FBI will e-mail you (4, Funny)

jurt1235 (834677) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805044)

This is the proposed message:

DeAR u.ser

Precvio3sly you have b33n victim of unsol.citated e-mail, so called s.pam selling u v1agra and p.enis enlarg.ements products, us.iNG aNNoying layouts ant teipos to confu..se your s.p.a.m..filters.
The FBI now offers you the ReA.L links to the places where you can buy your V.1agrA and P.eniSEnlar.gement produCTs for the real pr1ce without the middle S.P.am man.

Please go to v1agrahfDUgfapitdrGPSRGf.fbi.gov for the fastest S$hop

Re:The FBI will e-mail you (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#13805101)

From the Gastrono-me Blog:

Bacterial diarrhea also tends to be more watery. After you've blown your valves a times or two, it becomes quite watery. To be specific, sometimes it has the consistency of a completely melted milk shake. Thus, you can literally spray the side of the toilet if you want.

Re:Will I be notified (2, Funny)

ryanr (30917) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805147)

Will I be notified, if they find out I'm a victim??

The pills didn't work?

About Time (1)

RautenkranzMT (634613) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804848)

about time someone got him

In Other News... (5, Funny)

thesnarky1 (846799) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804850)

I am heir to the FBI throne which was recently desposed. FOr only $2000 down, you can secure your right to this massive wealth as well.

Re:In Other News... (1)

laughingcoyote (762272) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805025)

Whoever modded this offtopic is a. stupid and b. has no sense of humor...what is WRONG with people recently?

first (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#13804853)

first post

What about his crown? (5, Funny)

Datagod (613152) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804856)

Did they get his Spam Crown and Scepter?

Oh no! (5, Funny)

rock217 (802738) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804858)

NOW who will fill my inbox?!

Vietnam is full of crooks (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#13804860)

Vietnam is 100% full of crooks. Block them out from your firewalls, or be ready to receive all sorts of fraudulent orders from those FSCKERS.

Someone should just go and nuke that damn country.

MOD PARENT UP (1)

Jas0nC (878953) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805061)

It is true. I own a web hosting company and every single order from Vietnam (about 7 so far) is fraudulent. Not one legit order from there. I had to block Vietnam' IP range.

That explains it (5, Funny)

Seq (653613) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804863)

I had thought my Inbox was rather empty today...

Re:That explains it (2, Funny)

macrom (537566) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805150)

Tell me about it -- I knew something was up when I only had 367 unread messages in my 'Spam' folder. I thought maybe the internet was down last night or something.

This isn't news for nerds.. (5, Funny)

grasshoppa (657393) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804864)

...unless they shot him.

Re:This isn't news for nerds.. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#13805057)

whoever rated this flamebait should lighten up.

Your inbox..... (0)

8127972 (73495) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804866)

.... Will never be the same if he goes down.

Charged with what? (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#13804870)

Last time I checked, it was legal to e-mail someone you don't know.

Re:Charged with what? (5, Informative)

Coneasfast (690509) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804891)

Last time I checked, it was legal to e-mail someone you don't know.

if you read the article (not slashdotted yet):

The law also forbids spammers from using multiple e-mail addresses or domain names to camouflage their identities. Penalties include up to 20 years' imprisonment and an $11,000 fine per offense.

Warrants show FBI agents sought evidence Ralsky and Bradley sent commercial e-mail using at least 14 domain names.

Re:Charged with what? (1)

poopdeville (841677) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805161)

Spam is awful, but 20 years in prison for it is just absurd.

Re:Charged with what? (2, Insightful)

SScorpio (595836) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805184)

Ya, a bullet to the head is less expensive to the tax payers and makes other human waste of space think twice.

Shoot out (1)

mboverload (657893) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804871)

You mean there wasn't a shootout where he got shot? With crack sprinkled on him?

Awwww =(

Too bad... (deprived of property w/o due process) (3, Interesting)

Dr. Zowie (109983) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804874)

Seriously -- whether you like Ralsky or not, this practice of seizing computer equipment is probably unconstitutional. He is being deprived of his property and his ability to make a living, without due process of law. According to TFA, all of his computer were seized, shutting him down.

  We may object to Ralsky's nefarious tactics, but the point is that SourceForge could in principle be next.

Re:Too bad... (deprived of property w/o due proces (3, Insightful)

ivan256 (17499) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804898)

If you know this happened, you can be sure they had a warrant. That means there was due process.

Re:Too bad... (deprived of property w/o due proces (1)

91degrees (207121) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804959)

But the principle is still unjust.

They may have had a warrant, but what if he wasn't doing anything wrong? Then he's being deprived of his property by the government despite being not doing anything wrong.

Re:Too bad... (deprived of property w/o due proces (0)

Dr. Zowie (109983) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804960)

Surely they did have a warrant -- but should it be possible for someone, with merely a search warrant, to shut down your entire livelihood? There's no doubt that it is possible -- we often read about computers being seized and then returned, broken, years later. That seems wrong to me, whether it be legal or no.

Re:Too bad... (deprived of property w/o due proces (1)

DurendalMac (736637) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804991)

Yeah, and why would they seize mounds of crack, or fully auto weapons, or perhaps kiddie porn on computers? This is EVIDENCE OF HIS ILLEGAL ACTIONS, you moron. If his livelihood WAS illegal activity, then he should damn well be deprived of it. Christ.

Re:Too bad... (deprived of property w/o due proces (1)

91degrees (207121) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805021)

If this was a comparable crime, then why wasn't he arrested and charged? Anyone with mounds of crack, or kiddie porn or anything like thatwould have been arrested on the spot.

Re:Too bad... (deprived of property w/o due proces (3, Insightful)

ElMiguel (117685) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805042)

From the Wikipedia article on due process [wikipedia.org] :

Procedural due process is essentially based on the concept of procedural fairness. As a bare minimum, it includes an individual's right to be adequately notified of charges or proceedings involving him, and the opportunity to be heard at these proceedings.

Was he notified before the raid? Did he get a chance to be heard and to oppose the raid before it happened? I know he will have an opportunity to do so in the trial (if there is one), but the point is that even now his livelihood has already been destroyed.

I know it's hard to sympathise with Ralsky, but this could also happen to many other people if they are sued by the RIAA or MPAA, using exactly the same legal principle.

Re:Too bad... (deprived of property w/o due proces (0, Flamebait)

rhizome (115711) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805117)

Was he notified before the raid? Did he get a chance to be heard and to oppose the raid before it happened?

Notified of a raid? Are you new?

Maybe you're thinking of subpoenas.

Re:Too bad... (deprived of property w/o due proces (1)

Ironsides (739422) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804899)

Seriously -- whether you like Ralsky or not, this practice of seizing computer equipment is probably unconstitutional. He is being deprived of his property and his ability to make a living, without due process of law. According to TFA, all of his computer were seized, shutting him down.

Last I checked, a warrant was generally needed before property could be seized. Last I checked, a warrant equated to due process, at least until the trial ends. How else do you think the police get to keep evidence until the trial? Not all evidence is at the scene of the crime.

Re:Too bad... (deprived of property w/o due proces (1)

sakusha (441986) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804908)

Oh bullshit. You don't know what you're talking about. The FBI can't seize someone's property without a warrant, and they can't do a raid without a warrant either. Ralsky had due process, and he has more due process coming up, he'll either be charged and the seized property will become trial evidence, or he'll get his property back after the investigation.

Re:Too bad... (deprived of property w/o due proces (1)

Cruciform (42896) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804953)

Ever talk to someone whose property has been seized?
*IF* it comes back functional, it's obsolete by the time you see it again.
They also take the weirdest shit.
A kid running an abandonware bot on IRC had his music CDs, consoles, and books taken as well.

Still, I wish they'd just stick Ralsky in an evidence locker for two years.

Re:Too bad... (deprived of property w/o due proces (3, Informative)

bersl2 (689221) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804914)

Warrants unsealed last week revealed that agents in September seized computers, laptops, financial records and disks from the 8,000-square-foot home of Alan M. Ralsky.

Apparently, he is getting due process.

Also... (1)

suso (153703) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804968)

Seriously -- whether you like Ralsky or not, the practice of sending people gobs and gobs of email without them asking for it or doing business with you in the first place is probably unethical.

Re:Too bad... (deprived of property w/o due proces (1)

dubl-u (51156) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804976)

Seriously -- whether you like Ralsky or not, this practice of seizing computer equipment is probably unconstitutional. He is being deprived of his property and his ability to make a living, without due process of law.

Yes. Next thing you know, when they arrest murderers, they'll take away their guns! That's a clear violation of the second amendment. If we allow that to happen, next thing you know the UN will swoop in with their black helicopters and steal our precious bodily fluids. They must be stopped!

Re:Too bad... (deprived of property w/o due proces (0)

dhasenan (758719) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805094)

There are laws legislating the proper use of email as an advertising tool. Ralsky may, in fact, be abiding by them. So the US government decided to seize his entire business in order to determine whether he's guilty.

The due process that's missing is a court injunction against his activities. It's rather clear that the intent was to stop him, not to determine his compliance with laws.

As for murderers...generally, pistols and shotguns aren't essential to your livelihood, and they can kill others. Computers are essential to IT businesses such as Ralsky's, and they can't injure anyone. (Unless you throw them hard enough.)

Re:Too bad... (deprived of property w/o due proces (1)

AuMatar (183847) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805118)

No, they had warrants. To get warrants, you *already* need enough proof to make a crime probable. The seizure provides them with *additional* evidence.

Parent is victim of editorial nuking? (1, Flamebait)

Dr. Zowie (109983) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805097)

My original comment was rapidly moderated up to +5 Interesting and spawned a lot of replies. Then it sank to "1,Interesting". Looking at the moderation screen for the article, apparently it has now been moderated 0 times.

And I thought capricious editors were only for the paranoid. Thanks, guys.

No, that's evidence (1)

geoffrobinson (109879) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805124)

He can wipe those computers.

Now, if he is found not-guilty and it isn't returned then there will be problems.

Alleged drug dealers and drunk drivers have the issues you are thinking about. Inpound the car, sell it at auction...whoops, not guilty.

I wonder. (0)

Chickenofbristol55 (884806) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804876)

Did they find any meat products at this "king of SPAMs" house? Oh, wait....

Well is he shut down or not? (2, Insightful)

Zerbey (15536) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804878)

"Effectively" shut down? So he's free to just buy new servers, host them elsewhere and restart his spamming or have they slapped an injunction off him telling him to stop?

Porn? (3, Insightful)

Seumas (6865) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804879)

He must have been spamming something obscene, because the FBI doesn't have the resources to deal with spammers while they're on this moral crusade to re-puritanize this god fearing country.

Besides, spamming is okay as long as you're a big corporation that either does or may contribute or lobby congress at some point.

Spamming is only bad if you're a private citizen doing it, sort of like how raping teenage babysitters, doing coke, driving drunk and killing women when you drive off a bridge and wander away is only bad for private citizens.

So, the question (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#13804881)

  1. Does this mean the FBI has finally learned to distinguish friend from foe?
  2. Or is this just the proverbial stopped clock being right twice a day?

I'm shocked...SHOCKED.... (4, Funny)

JoeLinux (20366) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804885)

I mean, I'm sure he opted out of FBI raids on questionable business practices....

Call your FBI and say thanks! (5, Interesting)

azav (469988) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804910)

I just phoned the Detroit office of the FBI who raided Ralsky's home at (313) 965-2323 and told the responding agent that I was so unbelievably happy that their office raided Alan Ralsky.

The agent was amazed and replied "uh thank you. We don't get calls like this very often."

OMG. Wow.

This is an excellent opportunity to show your support that we STRONGLY support their action and efforts!

If they know their is huge public support for this, that may help them to shut down more of these spammers!

This is AWESOME!

Just call and say thanks and this will keep things moving in the right direction.

w00t!

Re:Call your FBI and say thanks! (1, Flamebait)

Seumas (6865) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804938)

This is an excellent opportunity to show your support that we STRONGLY support their action and efforts!

We do?

I couldn't care less. I hardly get any spam at all. I use spamassassin on my server and junkmatcher on my client. I'm sure I won't notice a difference at all with this douche.

The FBI surely has more important things to be doing, like going after corporate white collar criminals (Enron or Worldcom, anyone?) or Karl Rove or actual violent criminals.. Spam may be a nuisance, but it never killed anyone.

Re:Call your FBI and say thanks! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#13805027)

Yeah, apart from almost destroying the usefulness of e-mail for many people it hardly affects anyone ...

Re:Call your FBI and say thanks! (1)

Seumas (6865) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805068)

How does this guy destroy the usefulness of email? He can do whatever he wants - it doesn't prevent the SMTP/IMAP/POP protocols from working for me and people I want to communicate with.

Re:Call your FBI and say thanks! (1, Flamebait)

Z4rd0Z (211373) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805064)

You practically took the words right out of my mouth. If you don't like it, filter it. Problem solved. I've started using dspam and what I really like about it is that the emails that you train it to filter don't actually have to be spam, they can simply be any email that you don't want, whether it's v1agra spams or annoying jokes from your aunt. Because it's a purely statistical filter, it doesn't care what you feed it, it just filters according to your preferences.

Re:Call your FBI and say thanks! (5, Insightful)

schon (31600) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805066)

I hardly get any spam at all. I use spamassassin on my server and junkmatcher on my client.

If you hardly get any spam at all, then why do you need *TWO* spam filters?

You *GET* lots of spam - just because you don't see it, doesn't mean it's not there.

Re:Call your FBI and say thanks! (1, Flamebait)

Seumas (6865) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805135)

No, I don't get lots of spam. Most of it is denied at the SMTP protocol level and is never even written to disk. Most of the rest is filtered out based on content and /dev/null'd before it reaches the mailbox delivery step. The client side filter is then left to handle the very small quantity of mail that is difficult to discern with more general measures and makes it past the SMTP and MDA level and is of course then downloaded by the useragent for fine-tuning of the local filter.

Taking a guy's belongings and sticking him in prison (like most people suggest should be done) isn't really a justified response for wasiting a few kilobytes of bandwidth on my server every day. And it most certainly isn't worth granting government that "exception" they need to start prodding their way around. Today it's spammers. Tomorrow, it's anyone else they just happen not to like.

Oh wait, indymedia... the new obscenity strike force... nevermind. Too late.

Re:Call your FBI and say thanks! (1)

crimson30 (172250) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805069)

I'm sure I won't notice a difference at all with this douche.

See, thing is, you admit he's a douche. He may not be the worst, but it's nice to see him arrested for the principle of the matter.

Re:Call your FBI and say thanks! (0)

Seumas (6865) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805105)

There are a lot of douchebags out there, but that doesn't mean it's right to take their property and support them being imprisoned or violently treated. I hate spammers as much as anyone else - I just see strong efforts by LAW ENFORCEMENT and LEGISLATION as an edge-in on their ENFORCING and LEGISLATING every other aspect of it.

I can avoid being annoyed by spam with a few minor pro-active steps. I can't really avoid being raped or assaulted or molested on the street. I can't avoid being run over by a drunk driver who's had six prior offenses and two revocations.

Re:Call your FBI and say thanks! (1)

AuMatar (183847) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805133)

Sure you can avoid being raped or assaulted. Just don't leave your home in groups of less than 3, and carry weapons at all times. You can avoid being annoyed by assaultors with a few minor pro-active steps.

Re:Call your FBI and say thanks! (2, Insightful)

91degrees (207121) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804998)

Yeah, because I'd love it if my employer could be shut down and put me out of a job simply because he was accused but was not neccesarily guilty of a crime.

Re:Call your FBI and say thanks! (1)

heypete (60671) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805164)

I understand your point, but there are many, many more less-deserving people who are actually making an honest living who get worse treatment by the authorities.

There are several local firearms dealers who run upright, legal stores in my area. Every single one of them is exceedingly careful, complies with all local, state, and federal laws, frequently turn down sales to potentially shady individuals (even people who are otherwise upstanding citizens, but just ask some of the wrong questions), etc. Not once have they broken the law, any regulations, etc. -- they all comply fully with the "spirit" and "letter" of the law.

Yet they're frequently hassled by the ATF, California Department of Justice, etc. The ATF doesn't hassle them nearly as much as the CADOJ does. Without being accused of or guilty of any crime, they lose maybe a week or two's worth of business every year due to inspections, questions, and so forth. That's a fair bit of business, but you never see anyone complaining about them.

I will be the first to defend Ralsky's rights under the law, even though I loathe the man, his business tactics, etc. If the FBI had probable cause that he had been breaking the law, documented this, presented it to a judge, were issued a warrant, and executed their search and seizure within the bounds of the warrant and the law. If it turns out that they exceeded the law, I will gladly complain loudly.

Re:Call your FBI and say thanks! (1)

serutan (259622) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805038)

Wow, I'm glad you called them. I would love to have seen the look on that smug bastard's face when the FBI hauled away his computers.

Re:Call your FBI and say thanks! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#13805071)

This is AWESOME!

Let's see..on the one hand..busted a piece of shit spammer I'd punch in the fucking face if I had the chance...

On the other hand.. government taking away private property...Patriot act.. It could happen to you or me.. the RIAA might mistype an IP and YOUR livelyhood goes down the toilet...

piece of shit spammer..

government..

spammer..

Yeah, I think on this one I'm going to side with the .gov. :-) Please, bust more spammers!!!

Re:Call your FBI and say thanks! (2, Interesting)

at_slashdot (674436) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805115)

"Just call and say thanks and this will keep things moving in the right direction."

Why do you want to spam FBI with useless phone calls? I agree that people have to express what they thing, but this is ridiculous, just imagine the poor guys over there responding to the avalanche of phone calls...

Re:Call your FBI and say thanks! (3, Insightful)

hackstraw (262471) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805141)

Just call and say thanks and this will keep things moving in the right direction.

Hold your horses. Why was he "raided"? What law did he break? Did you break the same law last week?

I hate spammers with a passion, but I like my freedom a little more than they are irritating to me.

Re:Call your FBI and say thanks! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#13805145)

> I just phoned the Detroit office of the FBI who raided Ralsky's home at (313) 965-2323

No, no. That's a phone number, not an address.

I know because I often confuse them, too.

Slashdot slashdotted? (-1, Offtopic)

Jonatan (711478) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804921)

"503 Service Unavailable The service is not available. Please try again later."

One down, thousands more to go. (2, Insightful)

subzerorz (769341) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804922)

The world would be a better place when spam is gone.

Stop the buyers not the spammers. (2, Insightful)

onion2k (203094) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804933)

The spam problem will never be halted by arresting the spammers. There's so much money to be made that there'll always be someone to step up to the plate as soon as a spammer is taken down. The only way to stop spam is to stop it being profitable. Stop people buying from spam adverts and noone will bother to send the adverts. The only ways to do that though is to stop people seeing the adverts (spam filtering), or to educate them that 99.9% of products advertised are a complete rip-off .. and the 0.1% that aren't should be avoided because the company selling them resorts to spamming to sell stuff.

Much as it's great to see a suspected criminal arrested for sending this crap out, there's no chance that it'll actually made any significant dent in the torrent of spam flowing through mail servers every day.

Re:Stop the buyers not the spammers. (0, Flamebait)

humankind (704050) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804948)

Wow.

That is the goofiest thing I've ever heard.

It's not even worth a rebuttal.

Re:Stop the buyers not the spammers. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#13804973)

Right

We must kill them.
That will really stop them.

Seriosly, at least that will raise the bar for them.

Re:Stop the buyers not the spammers. (1)

GodOfNothing (675212) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804982)

Perhaps it should be illegal to buy from spammers...

OK, so... (1)

James A. Y. Joyce (877365) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804992)

...how do you propose we get the word out to every single potential spam buyer? Remember, if you miss out so many as 1 of these people in every 10,000, the spam will continue unabated.

Re:Stop the buyers not the spammers. (2, Insightful)

dubl-u (51156) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805005)

Much as it's great to see a suspected criminal arrested for sending this crap out, there's no chance that it'll actually made any significant dent in the torrent of spam flowing through mail servers every day.

I doubt that. Spamhaus estimates that a couple hundred people are responsible for most of the world's spam. If spammers are regularly arrested and sent off to jail, my guess the bottom-feeders doing it will return to embezzlement, pigeon drops, and selling Herbalife. They've just picked spamming because the risk/reward ratio is currently better.

Re:Stop the buyers not the spammers. (2, Funny)

DurendalMac (736637) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805073)

Not if you send out spam emails to all the other spamlords that show their buddy getting his shit pushed in by Bubba the Mad Dog Rapist in the joint.

Re:Stop the buyers not the spammers. (1)

Pecisk (688001) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805088)

I doubt this claim. My pick is that spammers actually sells their services for those "sellers", but there is no proof of profit returns. Yeah, it would be great to spam in such level, but I actually don't know much people buys it stuff. Spammers just speculate on this, but I guess such arrests, also a sucess of antispam services shows a set of golden age of spam.

Re:Stop the buyers not the spammers. (1)

Unholy_Kingfish (614606) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805104)

Will arrests stop ALL spammers, no way. Much in the same way the death penalty will not stop a murderer.

But if you make it financially not worth doing, it will slow down. You arrest them for breaking spam laws, it will slow down.

I will say that yes, people have the right to send emails promoting products, as long as it is not deceptive. Now most spam is deceptive in some way, or multiple ways. The people using spam as an advertising means are just as deceptive and can't be trusted with you credit card.

The problem with the spam is that the targets have no clue what spam even is. For example my father gets emails and asks "Why did I get am email from "company name here"? I don't use them." But I trained him to not open stuff that does get through. But I know he has clicked spam and spyware stuff. But he didn't know he did. I find it later on when the PC act "funny" to him.

Re:Stop the buyers not the spammers. (2, Interesting)

FishandChips (695645) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805178)

That's a rather tired cliche, and rather corporate too. It's the little guy's fault, of course, for being human. Not every country in the world is soft on spam and allows torrents of it, unlike the USA and a few others. A equally effective remedy is to put enforcement in place that makes the spammer realize that he has a high risk of being caught and if caught will get the book thrown at him. It's not as if we don't know who a lot of these people are, and in many cases we've known who they are for years. The issue is just as much to do with political will as anything else. Indeed a foreign observer might wonder whether some of the spam kings enjoy political protection (in the Russian Federation, SE Asia and elsewhere, as well as the US), since so many apparently operate with impunity.

What federal crime did he commit? (-1, Flamebait)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804951)

Just wondering if he actually did something or they are just harassing a businessman ( that does something rude, but legal, for a living. )

Re:What federal crime did he commit? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#13805089)

This is what I wonder. Some people might not like getting email, but sending email to people through opt-in mailing lists is perfectly legal business enterprise. They'll probably drop the charges in a few months after they've managed to take all his hard earned money, bankrupt his businesses, and put his employees out of work. The proceeds will make a nice Xmas party for the fbi though!

Re:What federal crime did he commit? (1)

humankind (704050) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805121)

Spammers routinely violate numerous state and federal laws. Computer tampering is actually now a capital crime under the USA Patriot Act. If this guy interfered with any network that conducts commerce or government activities, he could be convicted under these clauses. That's the tip of the iceburg.

Slashdot made the paper! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#13804955)

As he's become more outspoken, Ralsky claims he's received numerous death threats. A few years ago, Ralsky was deluged with hundreds of unwanted magazines at his house, after anti-spammers signed him up for subscriptions.

hehehe

So the Spam King . . . (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#13804956)

. . . is about to become a Spam Queen. Couldn't happen to a nicer guy.

~~~

More like a Spam Bitch.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#13805173)

Bubba will be on him every night putting more spam into his inbox.

A Step Forward In the Fight Against Spam (4, Insightful)

humankind (704050) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804974)

This is a very good sign.

The reason spammers operate is because it has been profitable for them due to their operating expenses (apathetic law enforcement, hazy jurisdiction, theft of third-party bandwidth and resources).

As more of these people get raided and have to deal with serious legal and criminal issues, the "cost" of operating will go up substantially, and as a result, it will not be as profitable for them to operate.

Let's hope the FBI follows through on this and puts this guy in jail. There's no doubt he committed a ton of crimes, including computer tampering, pornography, identity theft, etc. Spammers routinely break loads of laws in operating their business. Finally, we're seeing some agencies start to enforce these laws.

Re:A Step Forward In the Fight Against Spam (1)

Scarletdown (886459) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805070)

Would tax evasion also be one of his crimes? Or do you think that asshat is smart enough to remember how Capone got nailed?

I guess.... (1)

marsperson (909862) | more than 7 years ago | (#13804981)

Robert Mueller's [fbi.gov] maanhood didn't grow to the size of a cucumber like Alan Ralsky promised....

as a relatively new member of slashdot,... (2, Interesting)

iLogiK (878892) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805001)

i would just like to say:
You did WHAT [wikipedia.org] ???

i haven't had the time to read the comments so this joke has probably been already said, but:
you've slashdoted him via snail mail :)

It doesn't matter.... (1)

ELiTe185 (923235) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805007)

Someone else will just rise in his place. Spamming is good money, because they are complete rip-offs.

What we need to do is make spamming uneconomical. We need to block all spam, so that spamming won't be worth spammers' time. It needs to be a collective effort. We also need to arrest big-time spammers (like they did) to make other spammers afraid to be spammers.
If we filter all spam, then none of it will reach your in-box (just your bulk mail). If it doesn't reach your in box, then spammers would ask "why spam?" We need to be more aggressive on filtering spam.

How the FBI announced they were at the door... (1)

digital-madman (860873) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805011)

HHHeeeeerreeeeee's Jonny!!!!

Damn (1)

dj245 (732906) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805018)

You go to federal "pound you in the ass" prison for stuff like that

What wonderful news... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#13805030)

It's about time the FBI startd to "earn their keep" and start ridding us of nuesances of the likes of Ralski... So I'll be humming the song... "Ding dong - the witch is dead".... I did notice a "slight" reduction in my daily spam... if you call a reduction of 300 messages a day "slight". But I'm still getting about 2800 a day.... Ahhh - but I love collecting it, to feed to my trusty spam reporting system... After all, it's another mouth to feed.... :-)

It's just like "taking out the garbage".... but my reporting system is now honed to only take up about 5 mins a day for "upkeep" and pre-scanning for non-spam crapola.

c

Ralsky isn't the worst.. (3, Informative)

Dynamoo (527749) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805033)

Ralksy isn't the worst of the bunch.. perhaps his BIGGEST mistake is actually having some sort of media profile. There are plenty of spammers out there who are even more despicable than him, but it seems that Ralsky is an easy target. Perhaps they should consider going after Robert Soloway [spamhaus.org] or Alec Defrawy [thedefrawyscams.com] next?

Re:Ralsky isn't the worst.. (1)

Mistshadow2k4 (748958) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805151)

Yeah, there are still plenty more like him, unfortunately. Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to go check my spam for emails.

Good for inbox, Bad for legal system (1)

layer3switch (783864) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805050)

I am 100% all for this guy to stop what he's doing, but there is more to than just less spam in our inbox if this guy goes away.

"Last year, Michigan lawmakers passed legislation that allows parents to put their children's e-mail addresses on do-not-spam lists. Even though he insists he doesn't target kids, Ralsky was an inspiration for the bills."

I'm more afraid of legislature crafting the legal system to catchup to one guy. I mean, this is more freightening thought. No matter how bad this ex-convict asswipe deserves it, our legal system cannot just craft a law in order to make an example out of single case. I am not an expert on law, but shouldn't our legislature think abroad especially when considering this isn't local or state, but FBI, federal enforcement agency is to enact and enforce such ideal?

I'm sure, a lot smarter people than I, thought this law through before passing it, but I'm sorry, I can't justify supporting a law which is crafted to make an example out of one man's action on Federal level. This sounds too close to persecution and walking on really thin line here.

Re:Good for inbox, Bad for legal system (1)

Denyer (717613) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805096)

I can't justify supporting a law which is crafted to make an example out of one man's action on Federal level.

It isn't. On the other hand, a large proportion of spam comes from only a few offenders... and is no less a problem or resource theft because of it.

Re:Good for inbox, Bad for legal system (2, Informative)

eclectro (227083) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805176)


Because it was the FBI, they were enforcing federal law, not a local law that the Michigan lawmakers may have passed.

Do we know..... (1)

Scrab (573004) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805098)

How much the overall spam level will drop by while he's out of action?

I hate to sound pessimistic, but I can't see this having that great an impact overall, at least not on its own.

If it happens again, to a whole bunch of other spammers, then perhaps, but just this one guy?

I dunno....

I live in Michigan (1)

Jas0nC (878953) | more than 7 years ago | (#13805123)

I live in Michigan, and I have been noticing faster internet speed for the last week or so. I wonder (and bet) that it has something to do with this asshole not being able to send spam through virus infected computers on Charter's network.

Anything to do with control of the Internet battle (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#13805137)

Hmm... don't you think it's kinda strange that the worlds number one spam arsehole is arrested just days before important discussions concerning the future of the Internet are held [slashdot.org] particularly when a number of countries have expressed serious concerns at the lack of aciton against SPAM + PORN?

Brazil: "For those that are still wondering what Triple-X means, let's be specific, Mr. Chairman. They are talking about pornography. These are things that go very deep in our values in many of our countries."

Syria: "There's more and more spam every day. Who are the victims? Developing and least-developed countries, too. There is no serious intention to stop this spam by those who are the transporters of the spam, because they benefit...The only solution is for us to buy equipment from the countries which send this spam in order to deal with spam. However, this, we believe, is not acceptable.

Find more comments here [wgig.org]

P.S thank you to the posters of this insightful post [slashdot.org] and this one [slashdot.org] .

P.P.S Just a personal message to Alan: Hope you die in prison you scum sucking lazy obese cocksucker.

FBI found enlarged penises (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#13805160)

The article forgot to mention that during the raid, the FBI has found several enlarged penises. They were able to remove most of them from Ralsky's behind, but others will have to be removed by a surgery. These will apparently be used as evidence in this case.
Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>