Sweden: Rising popularity of illegal TV services sparks campaign by Nordic Content Protection

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More than 2.2 million Swedes – more than a quarter (28 percent) of the population – have used an illegal service to watch TV content in the past month, according to new research by the Swedish consultancy Mediavision.

Consumption of illegal services was up from 2023’s 25% overall.  The rate was 60% mong those in the 15-24 year age group. 580,000 households say they subscribe to illegal IPTV services, a rate that increased by 19 per cent compared to 2023, said Mediavision.  Many online consumers don’t know the risks.

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In response, the anti-piracy agency Nordic Content Protection launched an extensive information campaign on May 14 to boost consumer awareness, using well-known media personalities from the region.

Infographic: Consumption of illegal video services in 2024 in Sweden. Source: Nordic Content Protection

“It was obvious to stand up” said Hasse Aro, the host of TV3’s true crime TV program in Sweden. “Sometimes you may not know what the culprit looks like and I want to help make that visible by taking part in this campaign. I don’t think that many people know that illegal television services have a connection with organized crime and I hope that with the campaign we will increase awareness and knowledge among the public.”

Other well-known public figures involved with the campaign include sports journalist Suzanne Sjögren, Swedish football player Niklas Jihde, and numerous other media and entertainment personalities. NCP’s campaign is also supported by the telecoms association as well as the major TV and streaming players in the Nordics.

About Nordic Content Protection

Nordic Content Protection (NCP) is an independent non-profit membership association offering a range of specialized services in technical consultancy, criminal investigations, cooperation with law enforcement authorities, compensation agreements and testimony in court.  Staffed by IT technicians and experienced investigators with a background in the Nordic police forces, NCP collaborates closely with authorities, research and EU institutions and other partner organisations.

Further reading & content

Nordic Content Protection is stepping up its campaign against illegal television services.  Press release. May 22, 2024. Nordic Content Protection

Consumer awareness campaign videos. Released via YouTube. May 13, 2024. Nordic Content Protection

Why it matters

“Illegal TV services often look professionally structured, but what many miss is that they are actually illegal services that steal other people’s TV content and there are often links to organized crime,” says Stian Løland, CEO of Nordic Content Protection.

“Illegal TV services affect far more actors than just the TV and streaming industry, in the long run it affects the whole of society. Now we need to take joint action and fight this, from different perspectives and with different means,” says Mr. Løland.

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