UK Judges Now Say That Maybe Email Bombs Actually Are Illegal
from the took-'em-long-enough dept
In the last year or so, we've seen plenty of stories about just how woefully out of date the UK's Computer Misuse Act is. It seemed like every time a computer case hit the courts, we were told that since it wasn't covered by the Act, it was perfectly legal. One of these cases involved a teenager who email bombed his employer. The original decision found that the Computer Misuse Act didn't make that illegal -- suggesting that sending out email bombs was perfectly legal, at least until the act was changed (which they're working on). However, a higher court has now overturned that decision, saying that such email bombs are illegal under the act. However, unfortunately, the Reuters report on this story confuses the issue tremendously -- claiming that the judges said spamming was against the Computer Misuse Act (in fact, we now expect to see many copycat stories claiming exactly that -- even though it's not what they said at all). The details have little to do with spamming (for which folks in the UK have a different, but equally useless, law). Instead, the judges make it clear that their decision isn't about "spamming," but about sending a barrage of emails clearly designed to knock out a computer.