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Deal to combat UK piracy is nigh

A pirate

June 2, 2014

Following years of discussion, a deal between the large UK internet service providers and the entertainment industry bodies is set to be made in order to combat piracy of films, television programmes and music.

Internet providers such as BT, Sky and Virgin Media are expected to send “educational” letters to the consumers they suspect of illegally downloading media from the web.

Both the BPI and the MPA, which represent the British music industry and the Motion Picture Association, had urged for tough measures. However, the BBC received access to a document suggesting that the rights holders will have considerably less powers than they wished for.

It is suspected that from 2015, users illegally downloading media from the web will receive an “alert” letter designed to educate consumers that piracy is illegal.

This is despite calls from the BPI and the MPA for letters warning repetitive illegal downloaders of the punishments for committing piracy offences. The organisations also wished for access to a database containing information of illegal downloaders so that they were able to take further action, however this request remains highly unlikely.

Last month, the IT security risks of using piracy websites to access music, films and television series was brought to the attention of the public, with the release of a report commissioned by the Industry Trust for Intellectual Property Awareness which have a number of corporate, global members.

The expected deal between internet service providers and the entertainment industry reminds us that piracy is not acceptable. Not only is it against the law, piracy increases the possibility of a threat to IT security which should not be taken lightly.

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