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Brits illegally using Fire TV sticks warned about new risk when streaming Sky for Free

Adapted Fire TV Sticks continue to boom in popularity with many now offering ways to tune Sky Sports and Cinema for free but this hasn’t gone unnoticed with police launching a major crackdown.

 

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Criminals are cashing in on this telly-viewing practice with many offering “fully loaded” Fire TV Sticks for a one-off price or small monthly payment.

It’s big business but it’s not gone unnoticed by the authorities with UK police recently targeting sellers in a major crackdown.

Raids have taken place across the whole of the country with one person arrested and a further 10 interviewed under caution. The operation took place in conjunction with FACT and the Premier League with the aim of shutting down illegal streaming.

Although users of the actual devices weren’t targeted by the action, police are warning about the risks involved of using modified gadgets.

“Illegal streaming is a huge issue for the industry and while it may seem like a low-risk, high-reward crime, the proceeds are used to fund other serious forms of criminal activity. At the same time, it can expose end users to the risks of data theft, fraud and malware,” explained Detective Chief Inspector Emma Warbey, from the Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit (PIPCU) at City of London Police.

“By targeting grassroots sellers, we are sending out a clear message that this will not be tolerated. PIPCU will continue to work with partners across law enforcement and the industry to take action against those who provide illegal streaming services and protect consumers against the risks associated with using them.”

Although streaming content might seem attractive, it does come with its dangers. Adapted Fire TV Sticks can open homes up to downloading malware, seeing inappropriate and adult content along with getting scammed.

Latest research from the team at BeStreamWise suggests that 1 in 3 people who illegally stream have been a victim of fraud, scams, or identity theft as a result.

Over 2.7 million illegal streamers may have also had their devices infected with viruses which can slow things down and even steal personal data. It’s worth taking note and this warning might make you think twice about watching content for free.

Speaking about the latest crackdown Kieron Sharp, CEO at FACT added: “The success achieved through this targeted operation is directly attributable to the outstanding effort and robust support from PIPCU. By implementing these measures, a strong message has been conveyed: piracy is a criminal act that is treated with utmost seriousness and decisive action will be taken against suppliers of illicit services regardless of their size or scale.”

 

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