Michigan Attorney General Warns Remove.org

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Michigan Attorney General Mike Cox's office said yesterday it has warned Remove.org that Cox's office may sue the site for "deceptively marketing its supposed 'anti-spam' service to consumers."

Under the Michigan Consumer Protection Act, Cox's office said, it may sue for restitution, damages, plus civil penalties of up to $25,000. Remove.org has 10 days to reply to the warning, Cox's office said.

Remove.org could not immediately be reached for comment late yesterday.

According to the attorney general's office, Remove.org falsely claims to be "a complete service offering protection from spam e-mail, junk mail and telemarketers." Other false claims on Remove.org, according to Cox, include:

* That Remove.org is categorized by the IRS as a 501(c)(3) organization.

* That members of Remove.org will have "No more annoying and offensive Spam."

* That its service will protect children against adult material.

* That it will contact "all … current and future marketers."

* That Remove.org offers more protection than the federal government's do-not-call list because Remove.org will contact "the companies not covered by the National Do-Not-Call Registry and have your phone number removed from their lists."

* That it maintains a main office at 2020 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Suite 652, Washington, DC 20006. The address belongs to a Mail Boxes Etc./UPS Store, the statement said.

"The representations this company makes about its service are outrageous," Cox said in the statement. "Spammers who send pornographic images and deceive consumers for the purpose of obtaining their personal information are not likely to change their ways merely because a consumer has paid $10 to become a 'member' of this bogus charity. Large companies that have spent millions of dollars trying to solve the spam problem can tell you there's no cheap fix."

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