HOW DOES IT WORK?
Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) is a technology that allows live and on-demand streaming of television content online. By using a set top box to handle the media, you can then buy additional services from providers who re-stream copyright protected content without permission.
This can cause both the provider and the viewer to be in breach of international copyright laws, and face fines or even imprisonment.
IPTV is different to traditional modes of broadcasting by air, satellite and cable as it uses internet-based streaming. While this can appeal to customers for ease of use with fast broadband speeds to show live video and on demand, many criminals have taken advantage of the increased demand for online media content to set up illegal pirate IPTV platforms.
Always take care when buying IPTV equipment and services so you don’t fall foul of the law. We would strongly recommend that if you do choose to use IPTV that you do this in combination with a VPN service such My Expat Network to ensure your indentity stays private and anonymous.
IS ILLEGAL STREAMING DIFFERENT DURING LOCKDOWN ?
Millions of people around the world are locked down at home, looking for different digital media to help pass the time and to cope with social isolation.
Cyber criminals are quickly adapting their activities, offering:
- Higher-quality stream: while legitimate providers have agreed to reduce stream quality due to EU broadband overload;
- More content variety, even re-streaming Netflix for example, completely illegally to compensate the lack of sport events.
- Pirate IPTV can seem like a cheap option to mainstream providers.
WHAT ARE THE RISKS OF ILLEGAL STREAMING?
- Malicious software can infecting your electronic devices
- Giving criminals your personal and financial information
- Your card details getting stolen and used by criminals
- Streaming some websites and apps could expose younger viewers to inappropriate content
- Your favourite TV shows could end up being cancelled due to the lack of legitimate financing
- Breaching copyright laws has serious consequences
- By purchasing pirate streaming services, you are helping criminals to finance other types of crime
- You could also be mining cryptocurrencies for criminals
- Be aware of the malicious IPTV risks
- Only use official subscriptions such as Roku and Amazon Fire
- Only download software from official platforms
- Check that your payment is done in a securely. Avoid crypto currency
- Check the online platform for spelling mistakes, and bad grammar this could be an indication of a scam website
- Check that there is a registered company, and find out from which country the services are offered
- Use a VPN service to protect yourself
- Do not access free IPTV platforms. They want your personal information
- Do not be fooled by ‘high-quality streams’ and special discounts. Terms like ‘free’, ‘best’, ‘cheapest’, ‘express’ in offers and domain names, could be an illegal provider indicator. If a service sounds too good to be true, it almost certainly is.
- Do not share your phone number, email address or contact details with unofficial streaming platforms.
The full Europol warning is here