This list highlights prominent and illustrative examples of online and physical marketplaces that reportedly engage in and facilitate substantial piracy and counterfeiting. A goal of the List is to motivate appropriate action by the private sector and governments to reduce piracy and counterfeiting.
Some of the identified markets reportedly host a combination of legitimate and unauthorized activities. Others openly or reportedly exist solely to engage in or facilitate unauthorized activity. The List is not an exhaustive account of all physical and online markets worldwide in which IP infringement may take place. The List does not make findings of legal violations. Nor does it reflect the U.S. Government’s analysis of the general IP protection and enforcement climate in the countries connected with the listed markets.
During the past year, some online markets have been the subject of successful enforcement efforts. A notable development was the apparent shuttering, following the launch of a criminal investigation in Vietnam and industry engagement, of piracy services that had been included in previous Lists and that had operated under the names 123movies.to and gomovies.to. Also, action against YouTube-ripping sites has continued in 2018, following the shutting down of youtube-mp3.org in 2016.
For example, sites such as pickvideo.net, videodownload.co and easyload.co have reportedly stopped promoting or allowing unauthorized audio ripping from music videos and legitimate streaming services. Additionally, the Ukrainian cyber police reportedly took action against onlainfilm.co, a streaming site with half a million users. Peru also took significant action in 2018 against online piracy, including Indecopi action against the pirate sites of Roja Directa and International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) action against 19 sites, 13 of which are now reportedly offline.
Moreover, Peru has taken action to curb signal piracy, which has reportedly experienced a significant decrease in the last two years. In Romania, the Bucharest Tribunal ruled in a November 2018 decision to take required action against three pirated movie sites: filmhd.net, filmeonline2013.biz, and thepiratebay.org. There have also been notable actions taken against Internet Protocol television (IPTV) providers.
In September 2018, FAB IPTV, a major provider of unlicensed streaming content in the United Kingdom, announced that it was shutting down following a Europol-led raid, following a year-long investigation. In Sweden, the Stockholm Patent and Market court convicted and fined individuals connected to the IPTV operation Advanced TV Network (ATN) in a landmark ruling, and ATN has since gone bankrupt.
Country code top-level domain (ccTLD) registrars continue to step up efforts to address domain name abuse, including domain name registrations associated with infringing activity. For example, in June 2018, the European Registry of Internet Domains (EURid) and the International Anti-Counterfeiting Coalition (IACC) announced a joint initiative to combat cybercrime on .eu and .eю domain names, with a focus on clearing the registration database of fraudulent domain names through the exchange of knowledge and support pertaining to cybercrime, specifically counterfeiting and piracy.
Denmark’s ccTLD body, DK Hostmaster, created stricter identity checks at the end of 2017, which DK Hostmaster claims have helped combat IP infringement. In fact, DK Hostmaster reported that the share of “online stores” with .dk domain name registrations suspected of infringing IP declined from 6.73% in November 2017, to 1.03% in March 2018. Additionally, registrars continue to take actions to combat the online sale of counterfeit medicines. Following the shutting down of Nanjing Imperiosus Technology Co., Ltd, other registrars, including Nics Telekomünikasyon Tic Ltd. Şti. (Turkey) and CV. Jogjacamp (Indonesia), have reportedly taken action to disrupt illicit online pharmacy operators.