Feeds

Virgin Media set-top box modder gets 5 years

Jail for free-channel fraudster

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Build a business case: developing custom apps

A man from Birmingham has been jailed for five and a half years for his role in a cable TV fraud.

Mohammed Ali, 35, was sentenced last week for selling modified set-top boxes that can receive free channels.

Three other men were also convicted of involvement in the fraud. Umar Manir, 28, was handed 18 months' jail and ordered to pay compensation to Virgin Media. Shaukat Ali, 27, was sentenced to 12 months' jail, suspended for two years, and ordered to do 250 hours of unpaid work.

The fourth man, Subhan Ali, 29, absconded abroad and was found guilty in his absence.

The group were arrested in 2008, when 2,000 illegally modified set-top boxes were found during police raids in the Sparkbrook area of Birmingham. Large quantites of cash and two vehicles were also seized.

The convictions are part of a concerted effort by Virgin Media in recent years to stamp out set-top box and modem fraud. It claims network updates are making it impossible to take internet and TV services for free.

"Later this month, we will introduce a new encryption process in Birmingham, which is already rolling out across other parts of the UK now," said head of fraud and security Malcolm Davies. "This will protect our existing customers and make it impossible for others to take our services unless they pay for them legitimately."

CY4OR, a digital forensics consultancy, compiled crucial evidence to prove the set-top boxes had been illegally modified. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
So, Apple won't sell cheap kit? Prepare the iOS garden wall WRECKING BALL
It can throw the low cost race if it looks to the cloud
Time Warner Cable customers SQUEAL as US network goes offline
A rude awakening: North Americans greeted with outage drama
Shoot-em-up: Sony Online Entertainment hit by 'large scale DDoS attack'
Games disrupted as firm struggles to control network
BT customers face broadband and landline price hikes
Poor punters won't be affected, telecoms giant claims
Netflix swallows yet another bitter pill, inks peering deal with TWC
Net neutrality crusader once again pays up for priority access
EE plonks 4G in UK Prime Minister's backyard
OK, his constituency. Brace yourself for EXTRA #selfies
prev story

Whitepapers

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.
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.
Backing up distributed data
Eliminating the redundant use of bandwidth and storage capacity and application consolidation in the modern data center.
The essential guide to IT transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIOs automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.