Postal Police and GDF obscure illegal IPTVs that illegally transmitted the signal of soccer matches. Involved 5 million Italian users
Blitz of the Guardia di Finanza and the Postal Police against the "pirate TVs" that illegally retransmit the signal of pay TV (Sky and DAZN above all). The operation "Eclipse" conducted by the State Police and supported by the European agencies Eurojust and Europol, with the cooperation of the judicial authorities of France, the Netherlands, Germany, Bulgaria and Greece has led to the closure of many illegal platforms that offered the transmission of Sky, DAZN, Mediaset Premium (as long as it was active), Netflix and Infinity at a competitive price: 15 euros per month.
This is the largest investigation ever carried out in this area. It has seen the collaboration of the postal police of several European countries and has led to the discovery of a turnover of over two million euros. The Guardia di Finanza uncovered the "Xstream Codes" platform, which allowed the viewing of Sky and DAZN channels for free. At the time of closure, more than 700,000 users were connected. Those who exploited illegal IPTVs that retransmitted the analogue signal of pay-TVs into a web-digital signal will no longer be able to do so. A heavy blow for illegal streaming of content and piracy, one of the most difficult plagues to eradicate.
Pirated TV, the maxi operation involves 5 million Italian users
The investigation was carried out by the Postal and Communications Police Service, which used the most modern technologies to identify the foreign sources from which the signal for the transmission of content started. It is estimated that the Italian users who use the obscured platforms are about 5 million, for a turnover of about 2 million euros (between subscriptions and advertising).
In addition to having obscured the illegal IPTV platforms, the Naples Public Prosecutor's Office has also issued eight precautionary custody orders for transnational criminal association. Content producers can finally rejoice: with the closure of illegal IPTV the investments made in the purchase of television rights will not be nullified by those who illegally retransmit the signal.
How the illegal streaming worked
The investigation has led to the discovery of an illegal system that offered at a price of only 15 euros per month the full subscription to major subscription services. The criminals transformed the analog signal of the decoder of Sky or other services in a digital signal: they paid a single monthly subscription and retransmitted it to hundreds of people, with a net gain of thousands of euros. The stream was sent to resellers located in all Italian regions.
Customers were divided into three categories: families, businesses and hotels. Users also had the possibility of subscribing to a monthly subscription of 59 euros, which allowed them to resell the service to third parties and obtain a part of the revenues.
What users risk
Those who used the service risk quite serious penalties: from 6 months to three years in prison and a fine of up to 28 thousand euros. And as previously said, in Italy there are 5 million users who used these services.