[A2k] Verizon’s “Six Strikes” Anti-Piracy Measures Unveiled

Riaz K Tayob riaz.tayob at gmail.com
Sun Jan 13 09:51:23 PST 2013

        Verizon’s “Six Strikes” Anti-Piracy Measures Unveiled

  * Ernesto <https://torrentfreak.com/author/ernesto/>
  * January 11, 2013

During the coming weeks the controversial “six-strikes” anti-piracy 
system will kick off in the U.S. While none of the participating ISPs 
have officially announced how they will handle repeat infringers, 
TorrentFreak has obtained a copy of Verizon’s full policy. Among other 
things, offenders will have to watch a video about the consequences of 
online piracy, before their speeds are reduced to 256kbps. Also worth 
mentioning is that the copyright alert system will also apply to 
business customers.

verizonIn 2011 the MPAA and RIAA teamed up with five major Internet 
providers in the United States to launch the Center for Copyright 
Information (CCI).

The parties agreed to implement a system through which subscribers are 
warned that their copyright infringements have been monitored by 
rightsholders. After several warnings ISPs may then take a variety of 
repressive measures against alleged infringers.

After more than a year of delays 
the plan will officially roll out in the first weeks of this year.

One of the ISPs taking part is Verizon. Previously, the ISP made some 
remarks about the various punishments it would hand out to subscribers 
but in common with other participating providers the company has not yet 
announced the full details. Today, we can do this for them.

TorrentFreak has obtained a complete overview of how Verizon’s alert 
scheme will work and details of the mitigation measures they intend to 
put in place. The document 
<http://torrentfreak.com/images/verizon-six-strikes.png> is stored on 
Verizon’s web server but due to its placement is currently unfindable 
using Google.


When the IP-address of a Verizon customer is caught sharing copyrighted 
works on BitTorrent, the responsible account holder will first get two 
notification alerts. These inform the customer about the alleged 
copyright infringements and also explain how file-sharing software can 
be removed from their computer.

*Alert 1 and 2*

/“Are delivered by email and automatic voicemail to the telephone number 
we have on file for you. Notify you that one or more copyright owners 
have reported that they believe your account has been involved in 
possible copyright infringement activity.”/

/“Provide a link to information on how to check to see if file sharing 
software is operating on your computer (and how to remove it) and tell 
you where to find information on obtaining content legally.”/

If more infringements are found after the first two alerts then the 
account holder is moved on to the acknowledgment phase where “popups” 
appear on-screen. Customers will have to acknowledge that they received 
the new alert and will be instructed to watch a video about the 
consequences of online piracy.

*Alert 3 and 4*

/“Redirect your browser to a special web page where you can review and 
acknowledge receiving the alerts. Provide a short video about copyright 
law and the consequences of copyright infringement.”/

/“Require you to click on an “acknowledgement” button before you will be 
able to freely browse the Internet. Clicking the acknowledgement button 
does not require you to admit that you or anyone else actually engaged 
in any infringing activity, only that you have received the alert.”/

If the infringements continue after the fourth alert the subscriber will 
move on to the mitigation phase. Here, the customer can either ask for a 
review by the American Arbitration Association or undergo a temporary 
speed reduction to 256kbps.

*Alert 5 and 6*

/“Redirect your browser to a special web page where you will be given 
several options. You can: Agree to an immediate temporary (2 or 3 day) 
reduction in the speed of your Internet access service to 256kbps (a 
little faster than typical dial-up speed); Agree to the same temporary 
(2 or 3 day) speed reduction but delay it for a period of 14 days; or 
Ask for a review of the validity of your alerts by the American 
Arbitration Association.”/

If more infringements are found after the sixth alert “nothing” will 
happen. The user will receive no more alerts and can continue using his 
or her Internet connection at full speed.

However – and this is not mentioned by Verizon – the MPAA and RIAA may 
obtain the IP-addresses of such repeat infringers in order to take legal 
action against them. While the ISPs will not voluntarily share the name 
and address linked to the IP-address, they can obtain a subpoena to 
demand this information from the provider.

The potential for copyright holders to use the alert system as solid 
evidence gathering for lawsuits remains one of the most problematic 
aspects of the six-strikes scheme.

Finally, TorrentFreak also confirmed that the alerts outlined above will 
also apply to business customers. This means that coffee shops and other 
small businesses will have to be very careful over who they allow on 
their company networks. It could mean the end of free WiFi in many places.

Aside from Verizon we previously received some details on the measures 
AT&T and Time Warner Cable will take.

Leaked AT&T documents showed that they will block users’ access 
to some of the most frequently-visited websites on the Internet, until 
they complete a copyright course. Time Warner Cable will temporarily 
people’s ability to browse the Internet.

It’s expected that the two remaining providers, Cablevison and Comcast, 
will take similar measures. None of the ISPs will permanently disconnect 
repeat infringers as part of the plan.

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