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Filing a Spam Complaint

How to protect yourself from email abuses

The federal CAN-SPAM Act of 2003 went into effect Jan. 1, 2004. The CAN-SPAM Act (Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing) was created by U.S. lawmakers as a way to reduce spam. The act states that it "preempts all state law that regulates commercial e-mail except to the extent that state law prohibits falsity or deception."

The federal statute does the following:

  • Requires commercial email senders to provide recipients with the ability to opt out of receiving more email.
  • Requires email to be identified as advertisements or commercial email where applicable.
  • Requires sexually oriented email to be labeled as such in the subject line.
  • Requires the physical address of the sender to be included in the email.
  • Creates criminal penalties for those who violate substantive provisions of the law.

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