Spam crime doesn't pay

Steve Shklovskiy and Yan Shtok, both 23, have been sentenced to two years in prison and must pay more than $US100,000 in restitution for their role in a September 1999 spam spree that included 50 million e-mails that overwhelmed many large ISPs.

          Steve Shklovskiy and Yan Shtok, both 23, have been sentenced to two years in prison and must pay more than $US100,000 in restitution for their role in a September 1999 spam spree that included 50 million emails that overwhelmed many large ISPs.

          Authorities say the pair used PCs with commercially available software to "harvest" email addresses, then sent a mass emailing, asking recipients for a $US35 "processing fee" in exchange for a chance to work at home stuffing envelopes.

          More than 12,000 people were duped. AOL, AT&T and MindSpring Enterprises were among those swamped by customer complaints.

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