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pebbly-woman

Law Firm files $2.45 million suit against FAX.COM after getting blasted with 1,634 junk faxes.

Adapted from a Washington Post Online story.

Law firm Covington & Burling filed a lawsuit against FAX.COM seeking $2.45 million, alleging it "bombarded" Covington's fax machines, causing substantial interference with work at the firm.

Fax.com, of Aliso Viejo, Calif., did not send just one, or a few, or even a dozen faxes, the lawsuit alleges. During the week of June 4, Fax.com, which boasts on its Web site of owning "the largest fax number database in the world," faxed a whopping 1,634 unsolicited advertisements to Covington & Burling over the firm's more than 1,000 fax lines.

Covington & Burling is suing for $817,000 in statutory damages and $1.634 million for "knowingly and willfully" sending the faxes despite repeated pleas that they stop, for a grand total (including the treble damages) of $2.45 million.

Meanwhile, Charles Martin,Fax.com's compliance officer and a former San Diego police officer, suggested that law firms have deliberately placed their phone numbers in Fax.com's database in order to concoct lawsuits against the company. "It's about the money," he said.

Kevin Katz, president of Fax.com, said, Covington has the burden of proof. "They have to prove that it is unsolicited. You can't tell me that no one in those offices didn't ask for it," Katz said. "We send out terrific deals -- vacations, cell phones. Sometimes people do request it."

Hmmm, that's it. Maybe over 1,000 Covington lawyers each put their fax numbers into Fax.com's database because they actually like junk faxes?

Perhaps the best explanation lies in the settlement with the Washington state attorney general, who found that Fax.com was using an automatic dialer, called a "war dialer," in a Bothell, Wash., location to search for fax numbers through random dialing and then listing direct hits into the company's massive database.


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