New Technology by Virgin Media to Measure Illegal File Sharing

The ISP Virgin Media is set to employ a newly developed analytics tool called CView to monitor how much copyrighted material is unlawfully shared between web users.

The tool, developed by tech specialist Detica, will be rolled out as a trial, covering approximately 40% of Virgin Media's network. At this stage, their intention is to monitor illegal file-sharing rather than take action against perpetrators. Users will not be notified they are being tracked; however individual customers' data will remain anonymous.

The news comes a week after the government outlined its plans in the Digital Economy Bill to oblige ISPs to contact persistent unlawful file-sharers and retain the amount of notifications made for civil action. If ISPs' actions are not deemed to be sufficient, the Government could intervene and enforce technical measures, including cutting off persistent file-sharers.

Jon James, Virgin Media executive director of broadband, said, "Understanding how consumer behaviour is changing will be an important requirement of Virgin Media's upcoming music offering and, should they become law, the Government's legislative proposals will also require measurement of the level of copyright infringement on ISPs' networks."

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