‘Pirate’ Android App Store Operator Avoids Prison


More than half a decade ago a unique FBI operation took down several pirate Android app 'stores' and arrested their operators. One of the accused men was just a teenager at the time. While he admitted to criminal copyright infringement, the Georgia District Court has agreed to a lower sentence without prison.

WHOIS Limits Under GDPR Will Make Pirates Harder to Catch, Groups Fear


The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) will come into effect next month, evolving the current system for protecting personal data of individuals in the EU. As a result, data presented in the WHOIS database will be limited, something of great concern to anti-piracy groups who say tackling pirates will become much more difficult.

uTorrent Flagged as ‘Threat’ by Microsoft and Anti-Virus Vendors


This week several Windows users noticed that the popular BitTorrent client uTorrent was suddenly being flagged as a threat. While details are scarce, Windows Defender and some other anti-virus vendors list the application as "Potentially Unwanted Software." BitTorrent Inc. sees the warnings as false positives but also stopped serving what it believes to be the problematic release.

Russia Blocks 500+ Google IPs & Domains, Fails to Shutdown Encrypted Chat App


Last month, Russia's telecoms watchdog told ISPs to block 15 million IP addresses to shut down the encrypted chat app Zello. Most of those IP addresses belonged to Amazon, which responded by asking Zello not to use its servers. With Zello now operating via Google services, instructions have been sent to block 286 IP addresses and 285 domains belonging to the search giant.

MPAA Quietly Shut Down Its ‘Legal’ Movie Search Engine


A few years ago the MPAA launched its movie search engine WhereToWatch, offering viewers a database of legal alternatives to piracy. While the site worked as advertised, the movie industry group decided to quietly shut it down, stating that there are plenty of other search options available today.

Reddit Copyright Complaints Jump 138% But Almost Half Get Rejected


As part of its now annual Transparency Report, Reddit has revealed that copyright complaints sent to the platform under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act jumped 138% in 2017. While the leap is significant, the numbers involved a still surprisingly low for a platform of its size. Nevertheless, the company still rejected more than 44% of all notices for not being valid.

MPA Reveals Scale of Worldwide Pirate Site Blocking

Motion Picture Association Canada has revealed the scale of pirate site-blocking around the world. In a submission to the CRTC, the Hollywood group states that at least 42 countries are now obligated to block infringing sites. In Europe alone, 1,800 sites and 5,300 domains have been rendered inaccessible, with Portugal, Italy, the UK, and Denmark leading the way.

Publisher Gets Carte Blanche to Seize New Sci-Hub Domains

Sci-Hub, often referred to as the "Pirate Bay of Science," remains a thorn in the side of academic publishers. After obtaining an injunction against the site last year, the American Chemical Society went back to court for an update, which now gives it the authority to seize newly registered domain names as well. But will that end the domain whac-a-mole?