Wednesday, March 23, 2005
Anthony Greco, who is 18, entered a guilty plea today in Los Angeles to making extortionate threats against an internet instant messaging company, MySpace.com, if it did not give him "exclusive" rights to send commercial e-mails to users of the company's instant messaging service. According to a press release issued by the U.S. Attorney for the Central District of California, Greco made his demand after sending spam e-mail to accounts at the company:
* * * Greco admitted that he wrote a computer program that was later used to create thousands of fraudulent accounts at instant messaging service MySpace.com in October and November 2004. The program automatically sent more than 1.5 million spam messages containing advertising for mortgage refinancing and pornography to MySpace.com users. MySpace.com is an online community with instant messaging services. MySpace.com spent more than $20,000 to delete nearly 1.5 million unopened "spam" messages from its servers and to take protective measures against additional attacks.
Eighteen years old and facing a term of imprisonment is no way to celebrate graduating from high school.(ph)