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Amazon fire stick owners given fresh warning after raids are carried out

Amazon fire stick owners given fresh warning after raids are carried out

A crackdown on illegal streaming is taking place in the UK

A nationwide crackdown on illegal streaming is taking place in the UK as dodgy-box owners have been issued a fresh warning.

Before, it was bootleg TV, then it was pirated DVDs, which later inspired metasearch engines which would let you illegally download television shows and films.

Nowadays, people are able to illegally watch entire streaming platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and Disney Plus, to name a few.

What happens if you get caught?

If you get caught, you can land yourself in court over copyright breaches, with the chances of this happening now seemingly bigger than ever.

While it's not against the law to own a modified or hacked fire stick, using it to watch the likes of Sky Sports is a big no-no and breaks copyright law.

A reported 11 people have since been brought in by police recently, with one of them arrested and 10 interviewed under caution.

All 11 had been selling illegal access to premium TV content, including live Premier League matches via modified or ‘fully loaded’ smart TV devices or sticks such as an Amazon Fire Stick running Internet Protocol television (IPTV).

Before, it was bootleg TV.

A fresh warning

The Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit (PIPCU) at City of London Police, the Premier League, and the Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT) are the main groups who have issued a new warning for dodgy stick users.

A spokesperson for FACT, the UK digital forensics company, said: "By implementing these measures, a strong message has been conveyed: piracy is a criminal act that is treated with the utmost seriousness and decisive action will be taken against suppliers of illicit services regardless of their size or scale.

"We remain vigilant in monitoring platforms, including modified fire sticks that promote and distribute illegal streams, taking decisive action against those selling illegal access to premium TV content.

"FACT and its partners are determined to disrupt these criminal operations and non-compliance will lead to further law enforcement action."

Why illegal streaming can help fund widespread criminality

Detective Chief Inspector Emma Warbey, from PIPCU, explained: "Illegal streaming is a huge issue for the industry and while it may seem like a low-risk, high-reward crime, the proceeds are used to fund other serious forms of criminal activity.

"At the same time, it can expose end users to the risks of data theft, fraud and malware.

"By targeting grassroots sellers, we are sending out a clear message that this will not be tolerated.

"PIPCU will continue to work with partners across law enforcement and the industry to take action against those who provide illegal streaming services and protect consumers against the risks associated with using them."

Dodgy stick users have been warned.

Detective Inspector Steve Payne, from ERSOU's Regional Organised Crime Unit, also revealed why they take illegal streaming so seriously.

He said: "We know from experience that the money generated through illegal means such as this often goes on to fund wider organised criminality, which is why it’s key to apprehend those involved.

“We have also gained access to the details of those purchasing the streams, and I would remind anyone doing so that they will be breaking the law and could ultimately be subject to criminal proceedings."

Featured Image Credit: Nathan Stirk/Getty Images/Getty Stock Image

Topics: Amazon Prime, Netflix, Premier League, TV and Film, Disney Plus, Crime