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Sky boss claims firm winning war against online piracy

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Sky has claimed it is winning its battle with illegal streamers of Premier League football games.

As many as a third of football fans watch the sport illegally, with many streaming games via illicit websites or through prohibited add-ons to so-called Kodi boxes.

Broadcasters such as Sky and BT have sought to crack down on illegal streaming to stem the millions each firm loses in dodged subscription fees each year.

One Sky employee has said Premier League bosses have been successfully shutting down more illegal streams this season thanks to a High Court 'blocking order'.

Matthew Hibbert, head of litigation at Sky UK, said more streams are being shut down at the source thanks to the ruling.

He said: 'In terms of the impact on piracy, server blocking has been huge.'

Mr Hibbert, who was speaking at the Cable and Satellite Broadcasting Association of Asia in Macau this week, added that 'live streams of the Premier League can no longer be easily found in the UK'.

Granted in March, the court order gives Premier League bosses greater powers to go after servers for the entire 2017/18 season, which began in August.

The disruptions affect people using both illegal streaming websites and so-called Kodi boxes to watch games for free.

Sky has given few hints as to how it helps League officials track down copyright abusers, but has hinted it is heavily invested in the crackdown as a result of court costs and legal fees.

'It will allow us to quickly and effectively block and disrupt the illegal broadcast of Premier League football via any means, including so called "pre-loaded Kodi boxes",' Premier League Director of Legal Services, Kevin Plumb told BBC News in July.

'The protection of our copyright, and the investment made by our broadcast partners, is hugely important to the Premier League and the future health of English football.'

In the 2016-17 season the Premier League obtained a similar order for the last two months of the season.

The court order allowed Premier League bosses to blanket block internet servers.

Around 5,000 server IP addresses were blocked as a result.

The league previously only had the power to block individual streams, which were easy for hosts to re-establish using a different link.

Sky and BT Sport paid more than ÂŁ5bn ($6.6bn) for rights to show Premier League matches for three seasons from 2016/17.


source: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-5070091/Sky-boss-claims-firm-winning-war-against-online-piracy.html

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