A combined operation by the Deutsche Fußball Liga (DFL), the Spanish Football League (LaLiga), NAGRA and Nordic Content Protection has resulted in the closure of an illegal IPTV streaming network based in Spain that served more than two million paying subscribers worldwide.
The Alliance for Creativity and Entertainment (ACE) was also involved on behalf of the content industry.
The pirate network was offering more than 40,000 video channels and video-on-demand content, offering a wide range of channels, sports events, films, documentaries, and series, as well as 50 pirate servers located in various countries in Europe.
“Piracy is a global problem and it’s critical for the industry as whole to come together to fight it, share knowledge and leverage key partnerships and anti-piracy technologies to preserve high-quality content for our fans – whether it’s in sports or other types of entertainment,” said Melcior Soler, Audiovisual Director, LaLiga.
“The DFL welcomes this transnational anti-piracy operation that comes at the same time major European championships resume their activities. Tackling large pirate operations at the source is a key component in the fight against large-scale content theft,” added Dr Holger Blask, Director Audiovisual Rights at DFL.
Although based in Spain, the network operated worldwide, its tentacles reaching as far as Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Romania, Sweden, Switzerland, the UK, Canada and the United States.
“We applaud the Spanish National Police for leading this anti-piracy effort to a successful outcome,” said Pascal Métral, VP Legal Affairs and Head of Anti-Piracy Investigations, Intelligence and Litigation at NAGRA. “These results could not have been achieved without close collaboration between all stakeholders – content owners, governmental entities and anti-piracy companies – and is a clear demonstration of how such efforts can have a real impact on stopping the spread of commercial piracy. We are honoured to support the effort through our investigations and intelligence teams and to represent the interests of the sports and content industry to ensure their rights are protected.”
Its estimated the operation had produced in excess of €15 million in profit as well as much higher damages to the content industry itself.