New laws in Britain make sending spam to private people illegal. Anyone caught sending the unwanted e-mails face fines unless permission from the recipient had been given.

The fines come from the EU Privacy and Electronic Communications regulations, and the sending of the spam carries a maximum fine of 5000 ($8720).

The British government say the laws are a "step in the right direction", but the fines have been criticised by many. "This is a bargain for spammers ... Some of them make 20,000 to 30,000 per week," Steve Linford, from The Spamhaus Project, said.

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