Facebook wins $711 million against spammer

Posted by Emma Woollacott

Facebook has won $711.2 million in damages from internet marketer Sanford Wallace.


The company filed an anti-spamming case against Wallace back in February, alleging that he had accessed peoples' Facebook accounts without their permission and sent phony Wall posts and messages.


Unfortunately for Facebook, Wallace doesn't actually have $711.2 million. "While we don't expect to receive the vast majority of the award, we hope that this will act as a continued deterrent against these criminals," said Sam O'Rourke in a company blog post.


"Most notably, the judge referred Wallace to the US Attorney's Office with a request that Wallace be prosecuted for criminal contempt, which means that in addition to the judgment, he now faces possible jail time. This is another important victory in our fight against spam. We will continue to pursue damages against other spammers."


It's not the first time Facebook has pursued spammers to the courts. In November last year, the company won $873 million in a judgement against Adam Guerbuez and Atlantis Blue Capital for sending sleazy messages to Facebook users and setting up phishing websites to acquire Facebook logins and email addresses. It's still trying to collect.


Gone phishing


Meanwhile, Facebook is asking users for feedback on its new privacy policy. Members have until November 5 to comment. Changes include clarification on privacy settings, and a distinction between deactivating, depeting and memorialising accounts.