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Piracy Threats in the TV Everywhere Era and How to Combat Them

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The dark side of TV Everywhere is growing content piracy, David Leporini, Viaccess-Orca’s EVP of marketing, products and security, warned in an article he wrote for Connect World-Asia Pacific, the leading Telecom magazine.

In the piece, David looked at the major security challenges that content service providers are addressing and defined the main requirements of an effective anti-piracy platform.

“Video consumption habits are rapidly evolving. Today, viewers have countless options for enjoying their favourite movies and television programmes on any connected device, including TVs, PCs, smartphones, and tablets. While all of this adds up to a more engaging experience for viewers, there’s a dark side to TV Everywhere,” he writes.

“With the advent of multi-network content delivery and multi-screen content consumption, content service providers must now address security risks and issues over content consumption on multiple devices and networks, in addition to providing high-quality content.”

David identifies subscription sharing and illegal redistribution of live TV content over streaming and direct download platforms as two forms of piracy that have gained significant ground in all global markets. Subscription sharing, he says, has actually taken on various forms, mainly as subscription card and Control Word (CW) sharing for broadcast pay-TV services, and more recently as account credentials/password sharing for over-the-top (OTT) services like Netflix® or Hulu™. He believes streaming and download networks can result in revenue loss and ‘cord-cutting’ behaviours. With such networks, pirates share the content itself as opposed to the content descrambling keys required to unlock the content.

David argues that the most effective way to combat the illegal redistribution of content over streaming and download networks is by deploying a service-based anti-piracy platform that offers smart analysis of pirated content and helps take actions to fight piracy. Generally, content is redistributed illegally via link farms through content steaming and direct download networks. Link farms are any website, official or illegal, offering illegal content free of charge or as a paid service. However, the sourcing of content streaming or content download is usually done through large content platform providers.

“After identifying link farms and their corresponding content platforms, the anti-piracy service has the capability of collecting a massive amount of information. Such information may include what content is being redistributed, when it starts becoming available, where it is being sent, which content service providers are being impacted, etc,” David writes.

A more coordinated international approach to tackling piracy is essential and this topic was emphasised at a recent seminar on IP Sport Crime. Viaccess-Orca’s EVP & General Counsel Chistine Maurey-Panis, also acting as Vice President of the Audiovisual Anti-Piracy Alliance (AAPA), joined fellow members of the AAPA in calling for robust cross-border action to combat card sharing and illegal streaming, the publication Advanced Television reported.

Addressing 90 delegates from law enforcement agencies, Christine and colleagues suggested that present legal procedures were not as effective as they might be, since differences in the way EU member states implement laws can make it hard to enforce cross-border action.

Delegates at the seminar said that providing law enforcement agencies with a better understanding of card sharing and illegal streaming would help to bolster anti-piracy activity.

A recent legal breakthrough in the battle against piracy came in March when England’s top football division, the Premier League, won a significant court ruling – the second in the space of six weeks – preventing a British pub from using unauthorised systems to broadcast Premier League matches. Late last year, in an effort to protect TV deals with BT Sports and BskyB, the Premier League asked a number of channels worldwide to restrict the number of live games they broadcast because of concerns over piracy.

Meanwhile, as part of its efforts to thwart the illegal redistribution of content, Viaccess-Orca has developed a three-stage solution, called Eye on Piracy that helps content owners and service combat pirates. The solution has already identified close to a hundred thousand premium pirated sports events and hundreds of pirate services. Eye on Piracy tracks and discovers who is actively pirating premium content; fights them using injunctions and by technically preventing them from illegally retransmitting the content; and collects evidence in order to use legal means to stop the pirates from operating.

Piracy continues to be a major disruption to the content industry. Join us in our upcoming webinar – 'Keeping an Eye on Piracy'  on June 5th, to learn more about piracy and ways to fight it.

Eye  on Piracy Webinar

 

 

Photo credit: craigsmith0423 / Foter / Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Topics: TV Everywhere, Anti-piracy, Content Piracy, Content service providers, Eye on Piracy, Industry, piracy, Portfolio, security, Viaccess-Orca

Efrat Fenigson

Efrat Fenigson was the Senior Director of Marketing Communications at Viaccess-Orca. After several years as a computer programmer, Efrat understood her passion is not in creating technology, but rather in creating conversations about it. Previously, Efrat founded and ran the “New Media” sector in the Israeli Export Institute (IEICI), helping hundreds of Israeli start-ups take their first steps in global business. Efrat blogs about the pay-TV and over the top (OTT) markets, about users' behavior and expectations in today's multi-screen and second-screen reality, and about content protection/piracy. Efrat holds a BA in Computing from Monash University in Melbourne, Australia.
 

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