Piracy in the Age of IP Video
Video streaming to any screen is here to stay. Video programmers offer it to consumers directly and Pay TV operators supplement their traditional services with it.
By 2022, an estimated 20% of all consumer video traffic over fixed broadband access will go to connected TV sets and 40% of it will go to mobile. Piracy has made illegal use and rights-infringement a worldwide concern.
What is Video Piracy?
Video piracy is carried out by those who seek to profit by redistributing stolen video services on an industrial scale. It can happen anywhere there’s a hand-off between two processes, from video capture and production, breaches in data centers, broadcast and headend facilities, CAS breaches, in distribution and the cloud, from within consumer devices, by stealing access credentials, and more.
Pirates masquerade as legitimate service providers by using professionally designed experiences and high production values. Consumers are lured in by lineups and prices that seem too good to be true.
Why should we care?
In North America alone, it is estimated that 6.5% of Pay TV and Telco broadband consumers in 2017 accessed known video piracy sites. Piracy of a single pay-per-event (a prize fight) was estimated to cost one TV network more than 130 million views. Other estimates hold that in some countries, as many as half of all streaming video consumers get their programming through pirate devices and sites.
It isn’t just bad for business: piracy creates huge headaches for consumers, from stolen passwords, implanted malware and ransomware, and exposure to huge broadband bills when their user accounts are hijacked. Scores of low-cost illicit streaming devices are available to consumers at retail.