Impact Assessment of the CAN SPAM Act on Email Spam Rates
This study sought to evaluate the deterrent impact the Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing (CAN SPAM) Act has had on email spam rates over time. A sample of 5,490,905 spam emails was collected and aggregated into a monthly time series. Thirteen measures of CAN SPAM Act enforcement were coded from news articles and included in a time-series regression. The results suggest a possible deterrent effect of prosecutions, convictions, and lengthy jail sentences for spammers, but an emboldening effect of short jail sentences. The penalties under the CAN SPAM Act focus on fines more than prison terms. The results find no deterrent effect for fines, as spammers tend to earn a large income from sending spam. The Act might be revised to include prison sentences, especially longer ones to avoid the emboldening effect found. A deterrent impact was found for prosecutions, even though the CAN SPAM Act is under-enforced. Expanding enforcement might also be advisable.
Evaluation of the CAN SPAM Act: Testing Deterrence and Other Influences of E-mail Spammer Legal Compliance Over Time
E-mail spam has been growing since its inception. The Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing Act (CAN SPAM Act) is U.S. federal legislation that was passed in response to the growing spam problem. A series of evaluations followed after the Act, most of which reported that compliance with the Act’s requirements among spammers had not been affected. However, none of these evaluations used methods that were sufficiently rigorous, failing to capture the continuous nature of CAN SPAM Act’s enforcement, using a limited number of measures of noncompliance, and ignoring a variety of possible spurious influences. This research addresses all of these limitations by analyzing a sample of 5,490,905 spam e-mails sent between 1998 and 2013. Ten measures of spammer compliance with the CAN SPAM Act were operationalized to test the impact the Act had. Thirteen measures of CAN SPAM Act enforcement were coded from news articles and included in a time-series regression. Findings suggest that the Act may in fact be a deterrent, but in such a way as to increase CAN SPAM Act violations of header forgery as a precaution against being caught.
Education and Research Data Center
The US Department of Education’s Institute for Education Sciences (IES) has awarded the Washington State Office of Financial Management’s (OFM) Education and Research Data Center (ERDC) a four-year grant in support of the development and use of statewide, longitudinal data systems (SLDSs). A portion of the grant funding has been awarded to the Washington State Center for Court Research (WSCCR) and the Washington State Institute for Criminal Justice (WSICJ) at Washington State University (WSU), primarily for development of reporting using education data from the Washington Office of Financial Management’s Education and Research Data Center (ERDC) shared with the Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC), in combination with WSCCR’s Court Contact and Recidivism Database (CCRD).
The purpose of the project will be to construct a data warehouse to be retained by the Washington State Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC) containing individual-level data from the AOC Court Contact and Recidivism Database (CCRD) linked to education data from the P-20W data warehouse in the Office of Financial Management (OFM). A data pipeline will be created to allow future researchers to pull recurrent educational and juvenile justice data for continued reporting and analyses in Washington. A larger purpose of the collaboration is to build and streamline the capacity in Washington State to conduct research on the relationship between juvenile justice referrals and processing, education and employment progress and recidivistic outcomes. The research project will define, research, and report on the prior education experience and outcomes by juvenile offender sentencing type.
The data warehouse will be established to further the following study goals: (1) assess recent trends in school attendance, truancy petitions and court-based truancy interventions; (2) determine any racial/ethnic and gender disproportionality in school attendance and truancy petitions; (3) evaluate educational outcomes for youth who have experienced referrals to both the juvenile justice and child welfare system; (4) strengthen education in juvenile detention centers; and (5) assess outcomes for youth involved with juvenile probation evidence based programs.