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UK football season sparks illegal IPTV crackdown by FACT

by Mark Tyson on 16 August 2021, 13:11

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The Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT) has been working closely with regional police units to serve Cease and Desist notices to individuals suspected of supplying illegal streaming services. It appears to be the case that this heightened level of anti-piracy activity is timed to coincide with the start of the Premier League's return.

Last week FACT and the police served notices to addresses in Essex, Hertfordshire, West Yorkshire and Pembrokeshire – asking the addressed to cease any illegal activity immediately. Specifically, the action targeted those providing unauthorised access to premium television content. FACT admits that the targeted persons were "operating at a relatively low level," it wants to prevent them from undertaking further criminal activity and to send a message to others who might wish to follow in their footsteps. More actions of a similar nature are in planning, says FACT.

Pirate TV streaming is pretty big business in the UK. The latest stats suggest that there were 337 million visits by UK residents to sport stream piracy websites between July 2020 and June 2021. Researchers say that the top 10 illegal sport streaming websites in the UK make an average £1.4 million per annum. Revenue is gathered from those wishing to place advertising on or around the streaming content. As it is illicit streaming the likelihood of dodgy advertising, with pop-ups/unders, malware, crypro-hijackers, and other online ills are ever more present.

Equipment seized from Shrewsbury man suspected of illegal streaming of premium television channels (July 2021)

It has been a long time since FACT turned its attention to the activities of consumers, but with this latest campaign in full flow, it is hinting it might reach down to somehow warn or sanction the users of those who consume pirated streaming content. I'd guess that it will work with major ISPs to work on web blocks, like we saw begin rolling out to hit torrent sites in 2013.

Sources: FACT, Wired, TechRadar, Torrent Freak.



HEXUS Forums :: 36 Comments

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The latest stats suggest that there were 337 million visits by UK residents to sport stream piracy websites between July 2020 and June 2021.

Isn't that 10 visits per UK household, given we only have something like 30M houses/flats???

… and I know I wasn't one of those visiting, so some people must be *really* interested, or possibly the authors of this release were being really sloppy with their web server logfile analysis to boost the numbers somewhat.

Edit: So FACT didn't mention those web site visits, that was in the Wired article.
DanceswithUnix
Isn't that 10 visits per UK household, given we only have something like 30M houses/flats???

… and I know I wasn't one of those visiting, so some people must be *really* interested, or possibly the authors of this release were being really sloppy with their web server logfile analysis to boost the numbers somewhat.

Edit: So FACT didn't mention those web site visits, that was in the Wired article.

I don't follow football, but it seems like there are quite a lot of matches, so I could imagine one user generates a large number of visits over a full year, maybe even several per match if they change session during half time or whatever.
Maybe if it was affordable to the average wage earner less people would pirate? I'm so glad I'm not into football as the prices are getting crazy (and even worse given the multiple providers you need). Personally I was a little bit into F1 but gave it up when it went Pay to view and I earn well as I couldn't justify the cost. It really does seem to be case of pricing out poorer fans.
kalniel
I don't follow football, but it seems like there are quite a lot of matches, so I could imagine one user generates a large number of visits over a full year, maybe even several per match if they change session during half time or whatever.

Yeah, it just seems a bit of a fluffy metric to me. It is site hits, with many per page view? Or is it page views, with fewer than site hits but with multiple per user? Or is it sessions where a single visitor can traverse the site and it counts as one hit until they leave and come back again?

If the site is used as a back end for a streaming box, then those visits could be boxes aggregating data with no actual users showing any interest in the results.

It just strikes me as a meaningless number, but presented to three significant figures.
When i was young i never got a new game before i had sampled a pirate copy of it, but this was of course back in the days before the internet, so there was no in game videos or demos to rely on.
I think i would still do something like that if i got the chance, not least with the poor standard of games today ( as in not the kind i like to play due to the design of the games / gameplay )

BUT ! i would never leech like it seem people do to get their “footy” fix, but very easy for me to say as that particular game / sport have always been on my black list.