Verizon's Piracy Effort Includes Throttling Repeat Offenders

Although not unexpected, Verizon Wireless confirmed on Thursday that it plans to throttle the internet connection of customers who refuse to stop downloading pirated content. The move is part of the Copyright Alert System (CAS) that's set out to crack down on pirated content on an ISP level.

The Big Red made its throttling intents known during a panel discussion hosted by the New York Chapter of the Internet Society. Link Hoewing, Vice President of Internet and Technology Issues for Verizon, said the company will crack down on pirates in three steps.

The first step will consist of two emailed alerts warning the customer that the account has been flagged for copyright infringement. The second step will consist of up to six acknowledgment alerts which require the customer to read and confirm.

After all that, if the customer is still downloading illegal content, Verizon will throttle the Internet connection, resulting in an annoying slower download speed. Hoewling said that throttling will only be temporary, lasting two or three days.

"These mitigation measures will vary by ISP and range from requiring the subscriber to review educational materials, to a temporary slow-down of Internet access speed," the CCI stated. "However, termination of a consumer’s Internet service is not a part of any ISP’s Copyright Alert System program. Contrary to many erroneous reports, this is not a 'six-strikes-and-you’re-out' system that would result in termination.  There's no 'strikeout' in this program."

Time Warner Cable also spoke during the panel discussion on Thursday, saying that it will take a different approach in clamping down on piracy. Vice President of External Affairs Fernando Laguarda said the notification and acknowledgment phases would be similar, but instead of throttling the connection, the broadband provider will redirect customers to a landing page.

According to TorrentFreak, Laguarda did not provide additional details such has how long the redirection would last, and if users will be restricted from other websites.

Jill Lesser, CCI’s Executive Director, also attended the panel and reaffirmed that these measures are only meant to educate the public about pirating copyrighted content. Lesser acknowledged that many users will simply switch to other peer-to-peer services not tracked under the CAS agreement, but these hard-core pirates "are not the target of the system."

So if the hard-core pirates aren't the focus, then who is?

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    Top Comments
  • adgjlsfhk
    How does it distinguish between legitimate and pirated downloads? I can easily see this blowing up in a few years
    23
  • mesab66
    Lol - ask your VPN provider just how hidden it's service really is.

    e.g......

    http://www.securityweek.com/vpn-service-snitched-alleged-lulzsec-member

    "How did the Feds track down the alleged LulzSec member? It turns out that a VPN service reportedly used to mask his online identify and location was the one who handed over data to the FBI."
    20
  • Anonymous
    Not to get all political, but its likely that as the vast majority of peoples salaries stay stagnant, yet the prices of media continue to rise, we're just going to see more and more piracy, despite the risk.

    - J
    20
  • Other Comments
  • edogawa
    This isn't a big deal unless your a pirate who is illegally downloading content.

    I honestly don't get the mindset of pirates, they know(or should know) what their doing is wrong, and that they have no legal right to download said file. I always see pirates say it won't hurt sales because it's not physical goods, but it's not different to entering an amusement park, you have no "RIGHT" to be there or to use said file.

    Only thing I disagree on is the punishment for pirates being caught, some people are charged 1 million dollars? They should just pay 3-4x the cost of what they downloaded as punishment.
    -4
  • fkr
    edogawa must be the only person who never copied their friends tapes, compact discs or old floppy disc games.

    I am on the pirates side, I have bought to many games and music multiple times because the original copies were ruined by kids, car accidents or once when a massive blues music collection was lost when my car was stolen.

    When I have full rights to my goods as a consumer and a distribution model I like then I will side with the corps, but until then they can sleep in the bed they made.
    9
  • mesab66
    Lol - ask your VPN provider just how hidden it's service really is.

    e.g......

    http://www.securityweek.com/vpn-service-snitched-alleged-lulzsec-member

    "How did the Feds track down the alleged LulzSec member? It turns out that a VPN service reportedly used to mask his online identify and location was the one who handed over data to the FBI."
    20