Iowa phisher gets 21 months in jail

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An Iowa man, guilty of using phishing schemes to dupe as many as 250 MSN customers into giving up their personal information, was sentenced Friday to 21 months in prison.

Jayson Harris, 23, of Davenport, ran a phishing scheme by sending emails to MSN users asking them to visit a bogus website to update personal information. The emails promised the recipients a 50-percent discount on their next bill, according to published reports.

Fifty to 250 people fell for the attack, which netted Harris about $57,000, according to published reports.

Occurring between January 2003 and June 2004, the phishing scheme was the first of its kind investigated by Microsoft’s Internet Safety Enforcement Team. The group discovered the fake website Harris was using and notified the FBI.

Since then, the team has investigated more than 120 phishing reports.

Harris was indicted last August on 75 counts of wire fraud. He pleaded guilty on Dec. 30.

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