by Content Cafe — December 15, 2020
In a year where many people around the world have been locked down in their homes, reports of piracy increasing have been troubling for rightsholders. But despite life as we know it coming to a standstill for much of 2020, the fight against piracy never stopped. Below we list some of the key anti-piracy actions of 2020, from Australia and around the world.
After it was revealed that 62% of persistent pirates have experienced cyber security breaches, Creative Content Australia released a new campaign to highlight the safety risks involved when visiting pirate websites. Malware has become big business for pirate websites with an estimated one in three exposing users to malicious software designed to steal personal information.
According to data analytics company MUSO, global film piracy increased by over 33% when lockdown was in place. Meanwhile, a report from Videocities suggested that the major film studios lost more than $100m to piracy over just 23 days.
Taiwan’s biggest pirate site 8maple.r was shut down and its two owners arrested following an extensive criminal investigation. Authorities estimate the site had infringed US$33.2 million in copyrights owned by the film and TV industries.
A subscription piracy service with more than 2 million paying subscribers was shut down when the German and Spanish football leagues led an operation against the illegal IPTV streaming network.
In a significant move for the tech company, Google Australia agreed to voluntarily remove more than 800 pirate websites and block any proxy sites that reappear. The support of tech companies like Google is essential in the fight against piracy and this local achievement is being closely watched internationally.
The Australian Government announced plans for copyright reform with changes set to focus on supporting access to content in an increasingly digital environment. Draft legislation is expected to be released for public consultation in 2021.
Police in the UK have stepped up efforts to crack down on users of illicit streaming devices. Users of IPTV boxes, which often come pre-loaded with illegal content, were sent letters by UK police warning them that they were being monitored and could spend five years in jail if they continue to flout the law. It’s the first time that illegal IPTV users have been specifically targeted by police who have previously focused on operators.