With millions of visitors per day, Torrentz2 is the most-used torrent meta-search engine on the Internet.
Torrentz2 took over from the original Torrentz site, which closed its doors during the summer of 2016, and continued business as usual.
The site’s popularity hasn’t gone unnoticed by copyright holders who successfully requested the site to be blocked in countries around the world. The Torrentz2.eu domain remained operational in other parts of the world but this weekend that changed as well.
Starting a few hours ago, Torrentz2 became unreachable. Instead of seeing the site’s familiar homepage, browsers return an error message informing people that the site can’t be reached.
While downtime can happen for a variety of reasons, a quick glance at the domain’s status shows that something serious is going on. The EURid registry has placed the domain on ‘serverhold,’ which means that it’s suspended and under investigation.
“This domain name is registered to the domain name holder as shown in WHOIS, but is temporarily inactive (i.e. website and email do not function) and under investigation,” the registry reports.
The EURid registry doesn’t provide any more details but the actions are likely part of an enforcement effort related to copyright infringement allegations.
Indeed, the Torrentz2 operator informs us that the action is the result of an order from a public prosecutor.
“Torrentz2.eu has been suspended upon Public Prosecutor’s Order,” the site’s operator says, adding that its backup domain, Torrentz2.is, is still functioning.
The site operator didn’t mention the jurisdiction or country the order came from. We asked for clarification and further details and will add those if we hear back (see update below).
In the past, the EURid registry also took action against torrent sites, including the original Torrentz.eu, putting these domains ‘on hold.’ This was done after a complaint was filed with the Brussels prosecutor. These domains remained operational, however, and the ‘on hold’ status was eventually removed.
In this case, Torrentz2.eu has been harder hit. Users can no longer access the site from its original domain name. The site’s official backup domain Torrentz2.is, which is managed by Iceland’s ISNIC registry, remains available.
Update: The email Torrentz2 received from EURid only referenced a “Public Prosecutor’s Order” without any specifics, including the jurisdiction or country. We will try to find out more.