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Reference: Email-Junk Email

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Junk email, sometimes referred to as "spam" or "UCE", is unsolicited email that attempts to sell the recipient goods, services, or properties. Commercial UCE advertisements are most often used for multi-level marketing schemes, get-rich-quick schemes, work-at-home schemes, or for questionable products and/or adult oriented sites.

As of June 11, 1998 Washington's law does not flatly prohibit the sending of unsolicited e-mail, but it does make it illegal in Washington to send an unsolicited commercial e-mail using:

  • False information identifying the point of origin of the message or that hides the true origin of the sender (False Header)
  • False or misleading information in the subject line (False Subject Line)
  • A third party's e-mail address domain name without permission

If you are a Washington State resident, then the law is broken when:

  1. Commercial unsolicited e-mail is sent with:
    • a false header OR
    • a misleading subject line OR
    • a third party's address is used without permission as the point of origin of the e-mail,
  2. AND the e-mail is sent:
    • to a Washington e-mail address OR
    • from a computer located in Washington

The law only applies when a sender knows or has reason to know the e-mail is being sent to Washington.

To obtain more information from the State of Washington Consumer Protection Division, visit the State Attorney General's Site at www.wa.gov->. Your rights to take individual action under the law and the state's right to jurisdiction are protected when you register your E-mail address. You can register your Washington E-mail address at http://registry.waisp.org->. This ensures that would-be senders have some way of finding out that you own a Washington E-mail address.