As part of a Europe-wide raid against the operators of so called underground economy forums, the central unit for the fight against internet crime of the public prosecution office in Frankfurt has by order of Germany’s federal crime agency induced a warrant of arrest against the alleged operator of illegal streaming platform istreams.to.
The site offered its users illegal access to the pay-TV channels of Sky Deutschland for a monthly fee. The platform can’t be reached any longer and the operator is in detention while awaiting trial.
The investigations by the federal crime agency against the streaming platform were preceded by a complaint of an offence by Sky Deutschland in 2012 and the continuous securing and presentation of evidence by the pay-TV operator.
On February 23 and 24, 2016, the investigators arrested a 22-year old German man from the Münsterland region. The arrest marks the second success against the illegal exploitation of Sky content within a month.
On February 10, 2016 the district court of Verden imposed a one-year prison sentence on parole on a 53-year old card sharing pirate on the grounds of illegal provision of access to Sky’s pay-TV channels through the internet.
“After the groundbreaking verdict of the district court in Verden, the impressive success of this operation shows that illegal streaming has no future in Germany,” said Holger Enßlin, chief officer legal, regulatory & distribution at Sky Deutschland. “Sky has the most valuable programming portfolio in the fields of live sports, films and TV series in Germany and Austria. We will protect our content by any means necessary and work closely with the responsible authorities to ensure that operators of illegal platforms will be treated with the full force of the law.”
According to the federal crime agency, “the concentrated investigations both domestically and abroad constitute a major breakthrough in the fight against the German underground economy scene and is another proof that the internet does not provide full anonymity – not even the darknet. Furthermore, they underline the significance of international cooperation in the fight against cybercrime.”