Items tagged with Piracy

Streaming video is big business today with sites like Netflix and Hulu offering huge amounts of content that people can stream anywhere they have an internet connection. As many subscribers as Netflix and others have, two of the biggest streaming sites were illegal. Two programmers in Las Vegas recently admitted to running a pair of the largest illegal TV and movie streaming services in the country, according to federal authorities. One of the platforms reportedly had more paying subscribers than Netflix or any other legitimate streaming platform. FBI investigators arrested Darryl Polo and Luis Villarino in relation to the investigation, and both of the developers have pled guilty to copyright... Read more...
Nintendo has been selling the Switch about as fast as it can build them resulting in some bountiful profits for the company. The Switch has been the subject of some hacks with all the consoles on the market suffering from an unpatchable exploit thanks to the NVIDIA Tegra chip inside. Hackers have been able to leverage that exploit to do things like install Linux on the device. The ability to load unauthorized software led to concerns of piracy for Nintendo. The exploit may be something that Nintendo can’t fix but it can most certainly tell if you are running pirated software. Nintendo is banning consoles running any pirated software from its network. There are a few ways that Nintendo can... Read more...
Video game piracy is not exactly rampant on modern consoles, certainly not to the extent that is on PC. However, even though the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One have largely been able to avoid piracy from becoming a problem, a whole bunch of ripped PS4 games have found their way to the web, including Grand Theft Auto V and Far Cry 4.The good news for Sony is that unscrupulous gamers who want to grab a cracked game from the web and play it on their PS4 will have to jump through a hoops that will potentially deter a wider range of users. It starts with the PS4 firmware—as described in the NFO (information) files accompanying these games, the release group KOTF (Knights of the Fallen) says the PS4 needs... Read more...
It's hard for many of us to trust the studies that seem to come out on a daily basis covering a variety of topics. You can find studies on the same subject that come down on completely different sides of the topic depending on who funded them. You might expect a study commissioned by the European Commission (EC) to be made public no matter what the results were, but that certainly wasn't the case with an EC study conducted back in 2015 looking into a link between digital piracy and the decline in legal sales. Why was the report unpublished to the public for two years? The reason is simple: The study found no link between illegal downloads and a reduction in legitimate purchases of digital goods... Read more...
Mark Zuckerberg has big aspirations of expanding Facebook into the professional video space and wants to bring independent content creators into the fold. It is an appealing proposition with Facebook able to reach so many eyeballs, though the threat of piracy could scare content creators off. To address that, Facebook has gone out and acquired Source3, a content rights management startup. "At Source3, we set out to recognize, organize and analyze branded intellectual property in user-generated content, and we are proud to have identified products across a variety of areas including sports, music, entertainment and fashion. Along the way, we built an end-to-end platform to manage online IP and... Read more...
Microsoft has just been granted a patent that could help the company to fight back against users that have been taking advantage of its OneDrive cloud storage service to share pirated materials. Now more than ever, users are storing a lot of their data outside of their homes or devices, taking advantage of services like OneDrive, Google Drive and Dropbox to keep that data safe on someone else's servers. That's a great perk in itself, but more than that, these services also allow users to share that data.Some patent titles are vague, but Microsoft's latest leaves nothing to the imagination: "Disabling prohibited content and identifying repeat offenders in service provider storage... Read more...
If you live in the United Kingdom and regularly use search engines like Google and Bing to easily search for pirated wares, you might want to find another method to fuel your madness. Both Microsoft and Google have signed a pact in the UK that would in essence demote pirated content from search results. The purpose is to drastically reduce consumers’ ability to access sites that peddle copyright-protected materials. The UK Intellectual Property Office (IPO) has developed what it calls a Voluntary Code of Practice, which both search giants have agreed to adhere to starting June 1st, 2017. Other parties that have signed on with the Voluntary Code of Practice include the British Phonographic Industry... Read more...
In less than a week Nintendo will release its first official Mario game for smartphones, Super Mario Run. It's a big moment for Nintendo, which is starting to embrace gaming on mobile handsets, and Super Mario Run could end up being huge. That is, if Nintendo doesn't get in its own way. The reason that is a concern is because Super Mario Run will require a persistent Internet connection. Series creator and Super Mario Run producer Shigeru Miyamoto explained the decision to require an always-on Interconnection to Mashable in an interview, along with a string of other topics. In short, the online requirement is a move that's intended to thwart piracy. "We view our software as being a very important... Read more...
This past summer, we learned that even though the US government is adamant about fighting piracy, it found itself in a "Do as I say, not as I do" situation. So far, it's managed to - but given hard evidence, we can't imagine that it's likely to last for long. Starting back in 2011, the Department of Defense's US Navy worked with German company Bitmanagement to license 38 copies of its BS Contact Geo software, with the intent of giving the software a test run. Later, that installation number burst to over 100,000, and ultimately reached a staggering 558,466. The problem? The DoD didn't want to pay for those excess licenses; only the original 38. BS Contact Geo 7.2 Now we learn that the DoD... Read more...
What would you do and how far would you go to eliminate copyright infringements? Warner Bros. Pictures may be hurting its own cause, as the company has inadvertently flagged their own legitimate websites for "pirating" comment. Warner Bros. and other major movie studios claims that Google does not do enough to prevent piracy. They have requested that Google remove websites such as The Pirate Bay from its search results. The company in the last year alone has flagged more than four million URL’s. Warner Bros. employs California-based company Vobile to deal with copyright issues. However, it appears that someone at either Vobile or Warner Bros. has not properly exercised their judgement or critical... Read more...
Oculus suddenly finds itself embroiled in a game of cat and mouse as it attempts to keep titles exclusive to the Rift from running on competing VR headsets. Unfortunately for Oculus, its latest attempt at padlocking content with a DRM update backfired, and instead of stopping hacks like Revive from working, Oculus ultimately made it easier to pirate games. Let's back up a moment and see how we got to this point. At the end of last year, Oculus founder Palmer Luckey made what amounts to an open software statement by proclaiming, "If customers  buy a game from us, I don't care if they mod it to run on whatever they want. As I have said a million times, our goal is not to profit by locking... Read more...
You might not know it, but pirates in the digital age are an organized bunch. We're not talking about pirates with eye patches who sail the seas plundering ships and cities, but software pirates who rip movies and TV shows for illegal distribution on sites like The Pirate Bay and other torrent sharing portals. It's those types of pirates who are currently up in arms over recent changes made to a set of TV-release standards.Yes, even pirates have rules they abide by, and they're actually quite extensive when it comes to how content should be ripped in HD and SD format. The new set of rules contains several changes intended to modernize things, though the one that has some pirates feeling perturbed... Read more...
Piracy is often cited a reason why many game developers don’t focus their efforts on the PC. Here at HotHardware, we believe the PC is the ultimate gaming platform and urge developers to leverage the PC to properly showcase their wares, but there is no denying that a large number of PC gamers pirate games. How that piracy impacts actual, real-world sales is a matter of debate, since many pirates probably wouldn’t have made a purchase in the first place, but the fact remains piracy is a very real thing in the PC and developers remain concerned.It turns out PC gamers aren’t alone, though. Many Android users are willing to pirate games as well, especially in China and Brazil.tinyBuild, the game... Read more...
One of the biggest destinations on the Internet for pirated content just made watching videos a lot easier, most likely to the ire of media publishers around the globe. With the help of a plugin from Torrents Time, visitors to The Pirate Bay can now stream movies and TV shows directly from their web browser instead of downloading them using a torrent client. By skipping the often laborious process of actually downloading pirated content, this is the ultimate expression of instant gratification for pirates. Windows and OS X are currently supported along with major web browsers like Internet Explorer, Chrome and Firefox. After installing the plugin, streaming a torrent is a simple as clicking the... Read more...
With its Windows OS, Microsoft is likely the biggest victim of piracy on Earth, and it's no secret that China plays a major role in that. But, so too do other issues, such as the Chinese government's distaste or distrust of American companies. This ties into the reason that China is working to get its own CPU off the ground, as well as its own OS. Microsoft realizes this problem well, but can't ignore the huge potential of penetrating the Chinese government market. So it has decided to go out of its comfort zone to cater to the Chinese government's requirements. It's doing so by establishing a new company called C&M Information Technologies in Beijing, which will act as a bit of a proxy between... Read more...
Comcast doesn’t exactly have a sterling reputation when it comes to customer service or its business practices, and its latest stunt isn’t likely to win it to win it much praise either. Comcast doesn’t take too kindly to its customers pilfering copyrighted media content, so it has taken matters into its own hands by using unencrypted browser sessions to dish out its own brand of Internet justice. If one of its customers is found to be downloading or sharing content that has been flagged as infringing on copyrighted material, Comcast uses a man-the-middle attack to inject a “popup” warning message into your browser in an effort to persuade you from further pursuing illegal activities. While Comcast’s... Read more...
If you’re a Windows 10 user that just so happens to have a penchant for hitting up torrent sites (mainly for unscrupulous purposes), you made be surprised to find out that you may being discriminated against. That’s right, following news stories that Windows 10 is sending data data to Microsoft, some torrent trackers are getting spooked and thus are forbidding Windows 10 users from connecting. Torrent sites seems to be most troubled by Microsoft’s updated End Users License Agreement (EULA), which states: Sometimes you'll need software updates to keep using the Services. We may automatically check your version of the software and download software updates or configuration changes, including those... Read more...
The line couldn't be any more divided between politicians and consumer groups over a controversial anti-piracy bill passed in Australia. Called the Copyright Amendment (Online Infringement) Bill of 2015, the measure is intended to thwart illegally downloading and sharing copyrighted film and TV shows by requiring ISPs to block access to certain sites.To do that, a rights holder would have to take the issue to a Federal Court judge and convince him or her that an online location's "primary purpose" is to facilitate copyright infringement. If the judge agrees, Australian Internet providers would have to comply with the subsequent court order to restrict access to the location in question."This... Read more...
HBO's wildly popular Game of Thrones just recently concluded its fifth season, which ranks as the most popular in the series to date in terms of viewership, both through official channels and via piracy. Speaking of the latter, the season finale set a new record in piracy with 1.5 million downloads in just eight hours. That number is expected to balloon to 10 million in the coming days. It's not really a surprise that the finale of attracted so many illegal downloads -- while this represents more than any previous seasons, breaking unsavory records like this one is nothing unusual when it comes to Game of Thrones. The series has built up a rabid fan base in its five seasons, and piracy is something... Read more...
In a recent Spanish interview, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings offered a rather controversial perspective on content piracy via the Internet. In the interview, Hastings stated that while a great many may consider piracy to be a problem, the truth is that it has served a purpose in helping to create a public that is savvy about viewing best-quality content on demand via the Internet. Spain has long been a particularly sharp thorn in the paw of producers and distributors of entertainment products, with a raging culture of Internet file-sharing piracy borne of a dearth of good legal alternatives. Despite this, Hastings thinks Netflix's upcoming Spain launch will be one of the company's most successful... Read more...
Back in March, you could almost hear all of the jaws being dropped when it was revealed that Microsoft would be offering Windows 10 upgrades for free to those without a legitimate license of a previous version. That, in effect, meant that pirates could upgrade to Microsoft's latest and greatest just like those who paid for their Windows 7 or 8 license. As surprising as that revelation was, it made sense. Microsoft wants everyone on Windows 10, and proved that it'd do whatever it takes to make that the case. Well, nothing has really changed with the company's stance since that reveal, but a new blog post tips us off to some caveats. Here's a key sentence: "While our free offer to upgrade... Read more...
The argument is often made that if content were made cheaper to watch and easier to access, it'd be pirated much less, but sometimes, that just isn't the case at all. Despite the fact that Netflix's streaming service costs under $10 per month, its latest series, Daredevil, has been pirated by 2.1 million unique users since its launch on April 10. Netflix's Daredevil As incredible as that might be, Daredevil still didn't manage to take the top spot for most pirated. That record belongs to none other than Game of Thrones, which had 6.5 million downloads over the same period. According to piracy tracking agency Excipio, Brazil led the number of Daredevil downloads with 190K. In second place, with... Read more...
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