Tackling online copyright infringement

Wednesday, 10 August, 2011

The City of London Police and the international recording industry have agreed a partnership with online payment service PayPal that will see even stronger action to prevent PayPal's services being used by illegal websites worldwide that sell copyright infringing music.

The agreement follows the announcement in March that payment providers MasterCard and Visa would ensure their payment services were also withdrawn from such sites. Many of these illegal websites are based in Russia and Ukraine and have violated local and international copyright laws for many years by selling music without paying artists, songwriters or producers for their work.

Frances Moore, chief executive of IFPI, which represents the recording industry worldwide says: "We knew that when illegal online music services could no longer take payment from credit cards they would try to work around the restriction. That is why we and the City of London Police approached PayPal and I am delighted to say they responded instantly and positively.

"The work the City of London Police is undertaking is at the cutting edge of tackling online copyright infringement, a serious problem that is eroding the ability of record companies to invest in a diverse range of artists with serious consequences for jobs, tax revenues and consumer choice."

IFPI anti-piracy investigators are able to supply the City of London Police's Economic Crime Directorate with evidence of illegal downloads made from an infringing site. Once the police have verified the evidence, they are able to notify the payment providers who can then take action.

MasterCard and Visa will require the acquiring bank providing the retailer with payment services to produce evidence of appropriate licenses to sell music. If appropriate licenses are not in place then MasterCard and Visa can request they cease providing those services to the retailer. PayPal will require the retailer to submit proof of licensing for the music offered by the retailer and it will discontinue services to retailers in cases where licensing appears to be inadequate.

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