We discuss the findings and key recommendations detailed in the RUSI Whitehall Report 'Taking the Profit Out of Intellectual Property Crime: Piracy and Organised Crime'.
Published in March 2021, RUSI’s latest Whitehall Report 'Taking the Profit Out of Intellectual Property Crime: Piracy and Organised Crime' found that audio-visual piracy is increasingly carried out by organised crime groups operating across multiple jurisdictions.
According to one recent estimate, the 1,000 most popular pirate sites visited by UK consumers make up to £37 million a year in total from advertising in the UK alone; the top 10 of these are estimated to make £12 million. This rises to £460 million made by those same websites when revenue streams from other countries are included. In March, UK rights holders helped take down the pirate TV streaming app Mobdro, thought to provide illegal content to over 100 million users. These figures clearly demonstrate piracy’s high-grossing nature, yet very little is known about the financing of the crime.
The event was opened by Chris Mills, Director of Copyright and Enforcement Directorate at the UK Intellectual Property Office.
RUSI experts Ardi Janjeva and Anton Moiseienko describe how organised crime groups monetise their piracy operations and what can be done to disrupt them.
This was followed by a moderated panel discussion examining what RUSI’s recommendations might mean in practice for the UK’s future approach to piracy and intellectual property crime more broadly.
- Megan Heap, UK Intellectual Property Office
- Assistant Chief Constable Peter O’Doherty, South East Regional Organised Crime Unit and Chair, UK Intellectual Property Crime Group
- Peter Szyszko, Founder and CEO, White Bullet (advertising assurance provider)
The event will be chaired by Alexandria Reid, Research Fellow and Deputy Chair of the Strategic Hub for Organised Crime Research (SHOC) at RUSI.
Although the report’s recommendations are addressed to UK audiences, most of them are internationally applicable. This is particularly true of those aimed at rights holders, the financial sector and worldwide online service providers.