Kodi users put on alert as illegal streaming crackdown gets serious

Kodi users put on alert as illegal streaming crackdown gets serious
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Kodi continues to distance itself from the dangers of illegal streaming.

The team behind the TV Player, which is totally legal to use, have already made it clear that they don’t want to be associated with watching content without permission.

Now a new post on their website has alerted fans to the fact it doesn’t make or distribute so-called “Kodi boxes”.

These devices have become hugely controversial in recent years as they are often sold with software that allows users to access content illegally via add-ons.

In fact, sites such as Amazon, eBay and Facebook have all banned these Kodi-style set-top boxes from sale.

In the post, Kodi confirmed: “We do not sell computers, Kodi boxes, Kodi sticks, carrot sticks or french fries.

“Actually, we don't recommend specific hardware, and we're certainly not interested in selling hardware.

“The only thing we're interested in is writing software, keeping Kodi in tip-top shape, and advising you about how to better use Kodi.

“We are not associated with any hardware companies, particular brand or site selling the so-called “Kodi boxes” or “Kodi sticks”. There is no such thing.”

The latest news from Kodi comes as the crackdown on illegal streaming has just intensified.

This week the operators of a pirate streaming organisation have been jailed for a total of 17 years for conspiracy to defraud; some of the longest sentences ever issued for piracy-related crimes.

Steven King, who masterminded the fraud, has been sentenced to seven years and four months’ imprisonment.

Paul Rolston received a sentence of six years and four months, and Daniel Malone a sentence of three years and three months.

Trading under the names Dreambox (unincorporated), Dreambox TV Limited, and Digital Switchover Limited, via websites at dreamboxtv.co.uk and yourfootie.com, the three men had provided illegal access to Premier League football to more than 1,000 pubs, clubs, and homes throughout England and Wales.

The fraudulent companies earned in excess of £5 million through their illegal activity.

Over the course of the conspiracy, premium content from more than 20 broadcasters around the world was fraudulently obtained and supplied by the defendants.

All of these methods enabled users to view pay-TV without the permission of, and without making any appropriate payment to, the relevant broadcasters and content owners.

Speaking about the crackdown, Premier League Director of Legal Services Kevin Plumb said: “Today’s decision has provided further evidence that the law will catch up with companies and individuals that defraud rights owners and breach copyright. The custodial sentences issued here reflect the seriousness and the scale of the crimes.

“Using these services is unlawful and fans should be aware that when they do so they enter into agreements with illegal businesses. They also risk being victims of fraud or identity theft by handing over personal data and financial details.

“The Premier League's investment into cutting edge technology, combined with wide-ranging anti-piracy actions such as the one here today and the continuing landmark blocking injunction, means that it has never been more difficult for football piracy to operate in the UK.”

And FACT Director General Kieron Sharp added: “The result of this case demonstrates that the illegal streaming of, and illegal access to, Premier League football is a serious crime. This was a criminal enterprise whose only function was to make money from defrauding the Premier League and the legitimate broadcasters.

“For those people using services such as this, do not think that this is a grey area – it is not, it is breaking the law. Do not think it is a victimless crime – it is not, it puts thousands of ordinary peoples’ jobs at risk. Do not think that the internet provides anonymity – it does not.”

Written by David Minister

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