California is the first US state to pass anti phishing laws. Finally someone went a step further in, at least, trying to create a more secure cyberspace. Here are some of the most important snippets from the Anti-Phishing Act of 2005 :
22948.2. It shall be unlawful for any person, by means of a Web
page, electronic mail message, or otherwise through use of the
Internet, to solicit, request, or take any action to induce another
person to provide identifying information by representing itself to
be a business without the authority or approval of the business.
22948.3. (a) The following persons may bring an action against a
person who violates or is in violation of Section 22948.2:
(1) A person who (A) is engaged in the business of providing
Internet access service to the public, owns a Web page, or owns a
trademark, and (B) is adversely affected by a violation of Section
An action brought under this paragraph may seek to recover the
greater of actual damages or five hundred thousand dollars
(2) An individual who is adversely affected by a violation of
Section 22948.2 may bring an action, but only against a person who
has directly violated Section 22948.2.
An action brought under this paragraph may seek to enjoin further
violations of Section 22948.2 and to recover the greater of three
times the amount of actual damages or five thousand dollars ($5,000)
(b) The Attorney General or a district attorney may bring an
action against a person who violates or is in violation of Section
22948.2 to enjoin further violations of Section 22948.2 and to
recover a civil penalty of up to two thousand five hundred dollars
($2,500) per violation.
(c) In an action pursuant to this section, a court may, in
addition, do either or both of the following:
(1) Increase the recoverable damages to an amount up to three
times the damages otherwise recoverable under subdivision (a) in
cases in which the defendant has engaged in a pattern and practice of
violating Section 22948.2.
(2) Award costs of suit and reasonable attorney’s fees to a
(d) The remedies provided in this section do not preclude the
seeking of remedies, including criminal remedies, under any other
applicable provision of law.
(e) For purposes of paragraph (1) of subdivision (a), multiple
violations of Section 22948.2 resulting from any single action or
conduct shall constitute one violation.