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Ten Nations Join U.S. in Internet Piracy Crackdown
Authorities say groups distribute pirated software, other media on Internet


July 03, 2005

The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation and law enforcement authorities from 10 other nations conducted more than 90 searches starting June 29, intending to dismantle criminal groups engaged in illegal acquisition, sale and distribution of copyrighted software, movies, music and games.

U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales announced June 30 an effort the department has labeled "Operation Site Down." A Justice Department press release describes the operation as an attempt to disrupt the top tier in the copyright piracy supply chain.

"And by penetrating this illegal world of high technology and intellectual property theft," Gonzales said, "we have shown that law enforcement can and will find ­ and we will prosecute - those who try to use the Internet to create piracy networks beyond the reach of law enforcement."

The operation is working to undermine what's known as the "warez scene," the illegal online trade in software and entertainment products. Warez, pronounced "wares," is from the plural of the word software.

The investigations focus on organizations and individuals who are thought to be "first-providers" of copyrighted works to warez networks.

A warez group can release a stolen film or recording, for instance, to servers throughout the world within minutes. After that, unsanctioned copies of the works filter through the Internet on various peer-to-peer networks.

The other nations involved in the sweep are Canada, Israel, France, Belgium, Denmark, the Netherlands, United Kingdom, Germany, Portugal and Australia.


On the Web:

Justice Department Announces International Internet Piracy Sweep...
U.S. Department of Justice


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