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  1. Earlier this year news broke that UK ISPs are set to team up with copyright holders to notify subscribers found sharing pirated material. Today the initiative has been announced officially, receiving praise from all parties involved. Despite the optimism it may take well over a year before the first warnings are sent out. In an effort to curb online piracy, earlier this year the movie and music industries reached agreement with the UK’s leading ISPs to send warnings to alleged copyright infringers. As we previously revealed, the Voluntary Copyright Alert Programme (VCAP) will only apply to
  2. Earlier this year the UK Government promised to legalize the copying of MP3s, CDs and DVDs for personal use, but the changes have yet to pass. The entertainment industry and some lawmakers have voiced concerns over the plan, but the majority appears to be in favor of decriminalizing format shifting. To most consumers it’s common sense that they can make a backup copy of media they own, but in the UK this is currently illegal. Earlier this year the UK Intellectual Property Office proudly announced that these restrictions would be lifted this summer. After consulting various stakeholders the
  3. Police in the UK have become one of the first major police forces to deploy automated facial recognition technology to catch criminals. The British police will be using NEC’s NeoFace technology, which can match faces from crime scene photos or videos against a database of images in just a few seconds. Combined with the highest density of CCTV cameras of any country in the world, police body-worn cameras that are constantly recording, and a CSI-like smartphone and tablet app that allows for face and fingerprint matching in the field, it is rather hard to be a criminal in the UK nowadays. Most m
  4. All it took yesterday was a single article to trigger off a tidal wave of copycat reports across dozens of sites including the mainstream RT.com. Just to be absolutely clear - Britain HAS NOT decriminalized file-sharing and to suggest otherwise only puts people at unnecessary risk. File-sharing remains ILLEGAL in the UK, guaranteed. From next year people in the UK can download and share whatever they like. Movies, music and video games. You name it – it’s a free-for-all download bonanza with zero consequences other than four friendly letters asking people to try Netflix and Spotify. In fact
  5. The City of London Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit has forced the shutdown of a popular, if not the largest, sports-focused torrent site. A staff member at The Sports Torrent Network, a tracker popular with fans on both sides of the Atlantic, informs TF that in the face of threats closure was the only option. After obtaining government funding to protect the rights of mainstream music and movie companies, last year UK police began a campaign aimed at closing dozens of torrent and other file-sharing sites. Many sites subsequently reported receiving letters from PIPCU, the Police Intell
  6. BT, Virgin Media, Sky and TalkTalk have been quizzed over how they gather and store customers' data in light of a recent EU ruling declaring such practices unlawful. On Tuesday the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) ruled that the Data Retention Directive, which requires internet service providers (ISPs) to retain “traffic and location data” for at least two years, was unlawful. Privacy campaigners in Austria and human rights advocacy group Digital Rights Ireland had challenged the Directive by arguing it abused individuals' rights to privacy. The cases were referred to the CJEU. In
  7. By Jimmy Nsubuga Friday 24 Jan 2014 4:57 pm A porn movie was filmed on the Frenchay campus (Picture: Google Maps) A university in Bristol has threatened to take a porn producer to court after he filmed X-rated scenes on one of its campuses. University of the West of England (UWE Bristol) was angered after a 23-minute adult video was recorded on its Frenchay campus last summer. The movie featured a man calling himself Johnny Rockard and Xzena, a woman who claimed to be a student at the institution, engaging in sexual acts around the campus. The university later confirmed none of the perf
  8. Europol has arrested two people believed to be the masterminds of a cyber scam responsible for defrauding tens of thousands of euros from hundreds of victims by running fake auctions on eBay offering Apple Mac laptops. The criminals' fraud campaign targeted at least 15 countries including the UK, France, Germany, Italy, the US, Canada and India. Once the auctions were finished and payment received the criminals would either not send the item listed for sale, or, adding insult to injury, send things such as bricks, fruit and vegetables. The criminals are believed to have mounted the scams
  9. January 31, 2014 05:41 Edited time: January 31, 2014 06:21 Documents released by US whistleblower Edward Snowden show the Communications Security Establishment Canada (CSEC) used airport Wi-Fi to track passengers from around the world. Travelers passing through a major Canadian airport were potentially caught up in a vast electronic surveillance net, which allowed the nation’s electronic spy agency to track the wireless devices of thousands of airline passengers - even for days after they had departed the terminal, a document obtained by CBC News revealed. The document shows the spy agency
  10. By Matthew Cole First published February 8th 2014, 1:14 am ritish spies have developed “dirty tricks” for use against nations, hackers, terror groups, suspected criminals and arms dealers that include releasing computer viruses, spying on journalists and diplomats, jamming phones and computers, and using sex to lure targets into “honey traps.” Documents taken from the National Security Agency by Edward Snowden and exclusively obtained by NBC News describe techniques developed by a secret British spy unit called the Joint Threat Research and Intelligence Group (JTRIG) as part of a growing mi
  11. The RIAA’s brand new “notorious sites” submission to the United States Trade Representative reveals that in two days time some of the world’s largest file-sharing sites will become blocked by Internet service providers in the UK. On October 30, meta-search engine Torrentz.eu, torrent indexes ExtraTorrent and BitSnoop, and cyberlocker search site FilesTube will all be blocked at the ISP level. Responding to a request from the Office of the US Trade Representative (USTR), on Friday the MPAA submitted a new list of so-called “notorious markets.” The MPAA’s report listed many of the usual suspect
  12. With copyright holders seriously getting into their web-blocking stride in the UK, it is now impossible to access any of the most well known torrent sites from a regular web browser without tweaks. TorrentFreak took a look at some of the world’s most popular torrent and streaming sites in order to figure out which ones remain uncensored in the UK and along the way we discovered a few other items of interest. While Hollywood and the music industry are currently working hard to have dozens of millions of infringing links removed from Google, they are increasingly trying to cut off users’ access
  13. The UK website web blocking bonanza continued today with the High Court adding two major movie streaming portals to the country’s unofficial ban list. Six major ISPs have been ordered to block access to SolarMovie and TubePlus, two streaming portals with millions of regular visitors. The ruling comes after Hollywood studios filed a complaint that remained uncontested by the ISPs. In recent years the UK has become the easiest country in the world in which to have a website censored on copyright grounds. With several successful court orders in hand it is now a mere formality to have a torrent s
  14. The UK website blocking bonanza continues with the High Court adding four major movie streaming sites to the country’s unofficial ban list. Six major ISPs are required to block access to Megashare, Viooz, Watch32 and Zmovie, which all have millions of regular visitors. The list of websites that are blocked in the UK for facilitating copyright infringement is getting longer and longer. This week a new High Court ruling orders BT, Sky, Virgin Media, O2, EE and TalkTalk to block access to Megashare, Viooz, Watch32 and Zmovie. Through the sites users can stream Hollywood movies directly, or via
  15. City of London Police is continuing its crackdown on piracy with the launch of an official blacklist that advertising agencies can use to disrupt cash flow to allegedly infringing sites. The "Infringing Website List" is maintained by the the Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit in collaboration with entertainment industry groups. Over the past few months City of London Police have been working together with the music and movie industries to tackle sites that provide unauthorized access to copyrighted content. Initially the police only sent warning letters to site owners, asking them to g
  16. The UK Government has published a guide informing consumers about an upcoming revision of copyright law which will legalize CD and DVD copying for personal use. The changes go into effect in June, and will also broaden other forms of fair use, including parody and quotation rights. To most consumers it is common sense that they can make a backup copy of media they own, but in the UK this is currently illegal. After a public consultation and a thorough inspection of local copyright legislation, the UK Government decided to change current laws in favor of consumers. The changes have been in t
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