For Immediate Release
Media Contact: Bob Cooper
(208) 334-4112

Date: December 28, 2006

Wasden Stops Another Unsolicited Fax Sender

(Boise) – A Virginia company that allegedly sent dozens of unsolicited fax advertisements to Idaho consumers has agreed to permanently stop sending faxes to Idaho, Attorney General Lawrence Wasden said.

Wasden’s Consumer Protection Unit reached a settlement agreement with The Performance Institute. The agreement permanently enjoins The Performance Institute from sending faxes to any 208 area code telephone number, regardless of whether the company has an established business relationship with the consumer. The agreement also requires the company to pay a $5,000 civil penalty and subjects The Performance Institute to liquidated damages of up to $10,000 if it sends any additional faxes into Idaho.

The faxes that The Performance Institute sent advertised educational programs and conferences for law enforcement and other government agencies.

Sending unsolicited advertising by fax is illegal under Idaho law. The law does not require the recipient to contact the sender and ask that no further ads be sent.

“Unsolicited faxes continue to be an illegal, annoying and costly nuisance to Idaho residents and Idaho businesses,” Attorney General Wasden said. “The complaints we receive from consumers express continuing frustration with businesses that disregard Idaho’s unsolicited fax laws. We will continue to make this clear to the fax-spammers by pursuing lawsuits and significant fines against them.”

Since the Legislature outlawed unsolicited fax advertising in 1997, the Attorney General’s Office has enforced the law against 22 fax senders. As a result of the Attorney General’s enforcement actions, those companies have ceased sending faxes into Idaho and, collectively, paid more than $225,000 in civil penalties.

In 2006, Idahoans who received unwanted faxes forwarded thousands of such faxes to the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Unit. Most of those faxes came from foreign countries or businesses that did not identify themselves on the faxes.

Wasden said his office welcomes unsolicited fax ad complaints from Idaho consumers. Consumers may obtain a complaint form from Attorney General Wasden’s Internet site or by calling (208) 334–2424. Idaho residents outside the Boise calling area may call the toll–free number, (800) 432–3545.

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