Top Shopping Sites Have 2.7M Listings for Video Piracy Devices
E-commerce sites including Amazon, eBay, and Alibaba have millions of listings for products that let consumers subscribe to pirate online video platforms.
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Listings for video piracy devices are as close as the most popular shopping sites. Content security company Irdeto has studied the area and found 2.7 million listings for streaming devices that work with illegal pirate services on the most popular shopping sites, including Amazon, eBay, and Alibaba. It's also found ads for similar products on top social networking sites including Facebook and Twitter. Irdeto came up with the 2.7 million figure after studying 9 e-commerce sites in October 2016.

The top 100 video piracy platforms get 16.5 million visits per month, Irdeto says, citing data collected by market intelligence company SimilarWeb in September 2016. Viewers in the U.S. counted for 3.7 million of those visits, while viewers in the U.K. counted for 1 million. (Both Irdeto and SimilarWeb are part of the Naspers Group, and cooperate often in studying online user behavior).

Live sports is a hot area for streaming piracy. Irdeto says the top five categories for live sports piracy are baseball (25.2 percent), football/soccer (23.4 percent), mixed sport events (13 percent), tennis (10.5 percent), and motorsports (8.9 percent).

Irdeto's release includes a message the company has been pressing for years: Today's video piracy platforms are so slick, viewers often don't know they're pirating content. The average pirate platform offers 174 channels, it says, and some offer over 1,000. The average cost for this is $16.20 per month, far less than the U.S. average cable bill of $103.10 per month.

Irdeto recommends publishers adopt a comprehensive anti-piracy strategy to combat the threat. StreamingMedia.com asked the company for measurements showing that its anti-piracy tools reduced piracy or saved its customers money, but Irdeto was unable to provide that data. A StreamingMedia.com feature in June 2016 examined the area and found that top content security companies were unable to quantify what effect, if any, their products had in reducing piracy. 

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