Cooperation between global security technology leaders Irdeto and NAGRA and satellite service provider M7 has seen the assets of a Belgian pirate seized following a conviction for illegal pay-TV content distribution.
Ahmad Masroor, the founder of CCam.tv, was given a ten-month sentence for his part in an illegal card-sharing network whereby the site offered pirate subscriptions for a wide range of pay-TV content including TV VLAANDEREN, TéléSAT and CanalDigitaal. Masroor was charged with operating an illegal commercial control word-sharing server and sentenced to ten months imprisonment. In what it calls a significant move, M7 was also able to seize assets related to the site: €50,000 in a PayPal account that was used to collect subscriptions to the illegal service.
Investigations into the case commenced in 2009, and as part of the process Irdeto made a test purchase from the suspect and subsequently provided expert evidence regarding the control word-sharing server to the Belgian Economic Inspectorate. The content protection firm regards control word-sharing piracy as posing a major threat to pay- TV operators and broadcasters. It occurs when a pirate steals and retransmits a regularly changing control word that is passed between a smart card and a set-top box (STB), allowing subscribers to watch TV content they have not paid for. Upon receiving the evidence, the Belgian Economic Inspectorate raided the premises of the suspect, seizing PC's, laptops, hard drives, servers and business records.
Commenting on the verdict, Said Hans Troelstra, COO, M7 Group, said: "M7 will continue to fight piracy with both legal and technical means. We have joint forces with CA vendors and other pay-TV operators throughout Europe to further increase the effect of our counter measures."
Pascal Metral, principal corporate lawyer at NAGRA and Kudelski Security units, added: "This decision confirms the trend observed in other territories where such pay-TV piracy leads to numerous and successful prosecutions. Fighting piracy requires a combination of technical and legal countermeasures. We were pleased to bring our expertise and collaborate with M7 and Irdeto in fighting this case and will continue to do so around the globe."