The three are charged with violating the Intellectual Property Code of the Philippines which prohibits reproduction of copyrighted material such as TV programs or movies even for free viewing. ABS-CBN has filed three civil lawsuits in the U.S. federal district court against each of the defendants.
“Although free ang viewing pero kumikita kasi siya sa mga visits kasi yung website nakakabit sa ads ng Google (Although viewing is free, the site’s owner still earns from online ads)” said Chief Inspector Jay Guillermo, Public Information Officer, Anti-Cyber Crime Group, PNP.
Police say owners of these sites earn from online advertising. Anti-piracy advocates say there is a more sinister reason the public should be wary of free sites.
Ken Gamble, executive Chairman of Internet Fraud Watchdog, said internet users can get malware from these sites and unknowingly allow others to access private or personal information.
“Downloading free movies can expose yourself to downloading malware and if you download malware you can effectively give somebody control of your computer,” Gamble said.
ABS-CBN is also asking the public to report via email email@example.com any sites they encounter offering free viewing of its shows. (Stanley Palisada/ABS-CBN News)
Source: ABS-CBN News