The UK Government is planning to launch a dedicated police unit that will be tasked with fighting back against online piracy and the sale of counterfeit goods.
Announced on Friday, the new unit will be partially funded by the Intellectual Property Office (IPO). The task force will include £2.5 million in funds for the City of London Police and will be used over two years to get the unit up and running.
According to the UK’s Department for Business, Innovation, and Skills (BIS), the program will be operational by September 2013.
Minister for Intellectual Property, Lord Younger writer:
“Intellectual property crime has long been a problem in the world of physical goods, but with the growing use of the internet, online intellectual property crime is now an increasing threat to our creative industries.”
Lord Younger explains that piracy and the sale of counterfeit goods cut into industries worth £36bn annually while employing 1.5 million workers.
According to TorrentFreak, London Police earlier in the year began sending out letters to torrent websites to warn them that their practices are providing access to copyrighted material with the purpose of “criminal gain.”
The new piracy and counterfeiting division arrives at a time when UK’s major ISPs are already blocking major torrent websites including The Pirate Bay and KAT.ph. The team at Sky Broadband went one step further, blocking proxies that allow for access to torrent websites.
Do you think a new UK based piracy and counterfeiting division can actually put a dent in the global distribution of illegal products?