The arrest by the South African Police Service (SAPS) follows and investigation based on information received by the Police’s Provincial Commercial Detective Unit regarding these pirate activities that enabled people to view MultiChoice South Africa content as well as that of other international TV providers illegally.
Irdeto, a subsidiary of the MultiChoice Group (MCG), worked with the SAPS in the investigation which led to the arrest and confiscation of a number of pirate internet streaming devices and server equipment.
The accused appeared in court on December 5, and the case was postponed to February 2020. He was released on R2,000 bail.
According to Joe Heshu, Group Executive for Corporate Affairs at MCG, content redistribution is a growing problem and has emerged as one of the main forms of piracy over recent years, “particularly when it comes to live content such as high-profile sports events”.
“It is important for us to work with the relevant law enforcement agencies to ensure we swiftly and purposefully address this criminal activity,” he said.
In South Africa, it is illegal to provide content to any person or any third party without the consent of the rights holders in accordance with the Copyright and Electronic Communications and Transactions Acts.
“Content theft has become a full-fledged criminal enterprise, providing illegal subscriptions to compete with established operators, and actions like this are crucial in the fight against piracy,” said Frikkie Jonker, Cybersecurity – Anti-Piracy Director, Irdeto.
“To effectively combat piracy, content owners, operators and service providers must rely on cutting-edge anti-piracy technologies to identify the source of pirated content and allow for its immediate shutdown.
“Irdeto is committed to continuing to work proactively with customers, partners and law enforcement to identify and prosecute the parties involved in large commercial streaming piracy networks.”