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Hunt for Swedish file sharers steps up

ISPs can't be bothered

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The Swedish branch of the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) and the games and film industry body Antipiratbyrån (APB) have won the right to collect the IP addresses of Swedish citizens found to be sharing copyright-protected material and report them to officials. Both organisations no longer need prior authorisation from the Swedish Data Inspection Board (DI).

Earlier this year ABP was disciplined by the DI for breaking privacy data rules in its hunt for illegal file-sharers. APB has a 'notice and take down' policy in agreement with the European Union's ecommerce Directive.

ABP uses special software to record the IP-addresses of file swappers, the file name and the server through which the connection is made. Until recently, collecting the IP addresses of people who share movies, games and music against copyright laws couldn't be done without prior permission.

Now that the entertainment industry is no longer subject to the Swedish Personal Data Act, the hunt for illegal file sharers can finally proceed. However, in order to report file sharers, the entertainment industry would still have to cooperate with ISPs. So far, they are not keen to assist.

Jan Sjöberg, the press officer at Telia Sonera Sweden, told The Local this week that "we will not send out warning letters to our customers on anyone else's behalf." APB lawyer Henrik Pontén hopes ISPs will change their viewpoint. "It is also in their interest that there is a functioning games and film industry for legal distribution.”®

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