WSJ: COVID-19 drives 30% jump in traffic to black-market TV and film sites

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The Wall Street Journal reported that visits to illicit sites in the US and UK in March 2020 were up by about 31% and by more than 50% in Italy. Top pirate sites  served 50% more fraudulent ads in the US and five European countries.  These figures are according to Muso and White Bullet Solutions, respectively.  Europol says that some pirates have been offering Covid-19 discounts.

Read the entire story at The Wall Street Journal (Paywall)

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Why it matters

Prior to the end of April, while increases in overall streaming and network traffic have been well documented and widely reported, much of the reporting about the impact of coronavirus on video piracy has been anecdotal.

The figures from Muso, White Bullet Solutions, Sandvine and several other technology suppliers in recent weeks are among the first available through public reporting.   A number of other sources have cited some statistics privately.  The consensus is that network traffic is up in the 45%-50% range, and that increases in streaming piracy for entertainment content has offset the pause in piracy of sports content, as most sports have been curtailed.


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