Italy: Law enforcement blocks illegal streaming operations that reached half million consumers

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“The Net,” an anti-piracy operation conducted in the Tuscany, Emilia-Romagna, Campania and Calabria regions of Italy resulted in the blocking of pirate “IPTV” streaming platforms that were used by more than 500,000 consumers.

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The homes of twenty persons were searched as part of an enforcement action by the Economic-Financial Police Unit of the Guardia di Finanza of Milan and the IT Crimes Team of Milan’s Public Prosecutor’s Office.  

“The operation…led to the dismantling of a complex criminal network operating at national level and dedicated to the illegal dissemination and sale of pirate subscriptions for the use of television content,” said Federico Bagnoli Rossi, Secretary General of the Federation for the Protection of Audiovisual Contents and Multimedia (FAPAV), the anti-piracy organization.

This action continues a series of successes that began back in 2020.

Sophisticated operation

One of the pirate operations, in Campania, was said to be a legitimate Internet Service Provider that enabled pirates to operate multiple illegal services.  Another, also in Campania, dealth with procurement and the management of payments for illegal subscriptions.  In Tuscany, a suspect used more than 50 mobile devices to illegally redistribute programming from Sky

Why it matters

“Once again operations of this type make it possible to reveal the true dimensions of audiovisual piracy, a phenomenon still too underestimated by public opinion but which is actually managed by real cybercriminals,” continued Mr. Rossi of FAPAV. “Especially in such a difficult moment as the current one for the audiovisual industry, due to the pandemic, law enforcement operations are even more decisive to support the restart phase.”

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