Piracy

Thousands of IPTV Subscribers to Be Identified by Italian Police

By Bill Toulas / December 22, 2020

Italy’s Guardia di Finanza (financial crime police unit) has seized the servers of a popular pirate IPTV platform in the country and are soon to identify about 50,000 subscribers. The platform was focused on sports streams and the Serie A league in particular. This type of piracy is quite prevalent in the country. Previous surveys have shown over 4.6 million IPTV users in Italy are paying for illegal IPTV subscriptions only to watch football matches cheaper.

Typically, police and the affected broadcasters go after these platforms’ operators, sentencing them to imprisonment and demanding hefty damage compensation. In this case, though, many subscribers will be included in the legal action, communicating a clear message that merely taking part in this illegal media consumption process is enough to find serious trouble.

The Italian financial police have recently taken down 58 IPTV websites and identified their operators, while they also claimed to have a shortlists of 1,000 subscribers, so this is not the first time that users are directly targeted. However, the numbers are of a different size, so this time, the message is a lot more powerful.

The agency has released a video where the name “WEBNET IPTV” appears, so it’s safe to assume that the “webnet.cam” was seized. The police haven’t officially given any names, so we give you the IPTV platform’s name with reservation.

From the league’s side, Serie A head Luigi De Siervo has shared a statement of satisfaction with the media.

We are extremely satisfied with the results we are achieving in synergy with the Public Prosecutor’s Office in the field of combating audiovisual piracy. The work carried out has completed an operation of great importance. It is a further step forward in our daily battle because thanks to the seizure of the database of these criminals, the final users are being identified who will, in turn, be reported and prosecuted with penalties ranging from 2,500 to 25,000 euros.

So, not only is the Serie A boss gruntled, but he is also informed about the possible penalties that are in accordance with the provisions of the associated laws and felt the need to include them in his statement as a form of intimidation.

Whether or not the judge will have the same approach remains to be seen. Also, the police may not follow up with the full list of 50,000 subscribers, so this could all be just another attempt to spread fear.



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