Feeds

Mandy not swayed by ents mogul on illegal file sharing

Says piracy chat with David Geffen never happened

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

The government has dismissed reports that suggest business secretary Lord Mandelson plans to crackdown on illegal file sharing, by slapping hefty fines on thousands of individuals found guilty of abusing their web access.

A spokeswoman at the Department for Business Innovation and Skills (BIS) told The Register that it was “nonsense” to “speculate” that Mandelson would target teenagers who illegally download music and films.

She said news reports that had appeared over the weekend were “simply journalists putting two plus two together and coming up with seven”.

The Daily Telegraph claimed that millions of people throughout the UK faced fines of up to £50,000 if their kids were caught illegally downloading films and music.

Meanwhile, according to the Times, Mandelson, who took over responsibility for digital policy after Lord Carter — author of the Digital Britain report — recently left the government, is supposedly mulling tougher measures against online piracy following a meeting with DreamWorks co-founder David Geffen.

He had a private dinner with Geffen, who is a long-standing critic of illegal file sharing, while holidaying in the Greek island of Corfu earlier this month at a villa owned by the Rothschild banking family.

However, the BIS spokeswoman denied that any discussion had taken place between the two men about internet piracy.

Treasury minister Stephen Timms, who took charge of the government’s Digital Britain plans earlier this month, told the Financial Times on Friday that UK.gov was hoping to reduce illegal file sharing in Blighty by 70 per cent within a year.

He confirmed that ISPs had been told to write letters to people caught illicitly downloading copyrighted material, and added that persistent offenders could face the threat of court action.

“The [70 per cent] target is a reasonable one,” Timms told the FT. “The concern is if the target isn’t hit, what happens then and how quickly we look at it again.”

Communications watchdog Ofcom would, under the Digital Britain proposals, be granted powers to step in; either by slowing internet connections or blocking access to piracy websites used by anyone who persists in illegal file sharing online.

Carter’s final report on Digital Britain was published in June. It stopped short of mandating a mechanism for persistent copyright infringers to be disconnected, but did suggest port blocking, protocol blocking, URL and IP address blocking, bandwidth capping, bandwidth shaping and filtering of specific content as sanctions. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Hello, police, El Reg here. Are we a bunch of terrorists now?
Do Brits risk arrest for watching beheading video nasty? We asked the fuzz
Snowden on NSA's MonsterMind TERROR: It may trigger cyberwar
Plus: Syria's internet going down? That was a US cock-up
UK government accused of hiding TRUTH about Universal Credit fiasco
'Reset rating keeps secrets on one-dole-to-rule-them-all plan', say MPs
Caught red-handed: UK cops, PCSOs, specials behaving badly… on social media
No Mr Fuzz, don't ask a crime victim to be your pal on Facebook
e-Borders fiasco: Brits stung for £224m after US IT giant sues UK govt
Defeat to Raytheon branded 'catastrophic result'
Yes, but what are your plans if a DRAGON attacks?
Local UK gov outs most ridiculous FoI requests...
EU justice chief blasts Google on 'right to be forgotten'
Don't pretend it's a freedom of speech issue – interim commish
Munich considers dumping Linux for ... GULP ... Windows!
Give a penguinista a hug, the Outlook's not good for open source's poster child
This'll end well: US govt says car-to-car jibber-jabber will SAVE lives
Department of Transportation starts cogs turning for another wireless comms standard
UK fuzz want PINCODES on ALL mobile phones
Met Police calls for mandatory passwords on all new mobes
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.