Despite various initiatives to prevent internet piracy of movies, video games, music, and other digital products, the peer-to-peer infrastructure that promotes piracy thrives. You might have thought that this would stop with the advent of streaming services like Netflix, Amazon, Apple TV+, and more, which offer high-quality content, instant access, and great user experiences. However, online piracy seems like a many-headed beast that has received an extra boost during the pandemic.
In 2020, there was a massive increase in piracy in the initial days of the lockdown, as everyone found themselves working from home. Data released by Muso reveals that media piracy surged 33% worldwide between the last 7 days of February 2020 and March 2020. In the US alone, film and TV piracy increased by 41%, while increasing 43% in the UK. The real threat came in 2021, when studios and channels realized that the pandemic was far from over, and holding onto new releases was costing them hugely. As a result, many films were released like Black Widow and Wonder Woman 1984, but they only drove traffic to piracy sites. There were 105 billion visits to piracy websites between within 2021.
The rapid growth of digital media and internet connectivity has given incredible opportunities for content publishers or distribution partners. However, these conditions are also conducive to those looking to make a quick buck off others’ efforts. These bad actors deploy sophisticated technologies to steal your content and distribute it illegally. If you don’t grapple with this continuously, it will impact your monetization potential. So, as people increasingly turn to online content, digital rights management has become a core concern.
People Love Freebies
There are so many top brands pumping out award-winning content at a rapid pace. We have more access to online movies, games, and music today than ever before. However, a large number of people still prefer access to pirated content, since they can get it for free. For instance, more than a third of the people in the UK interested in watching live sports online choose to watch pirated live streams. Football games are among the most pirated sports, accounting for 27.4% of all illegal downloads and views, followed by basketball at 25.5%.
This can be both due to an unwillingness to pay or just streaming fatigue. However, this attitude leads to millions of dollars in losses for companies and rights holders, as advertising doesn't get utilized due to low viewership numbers.
This matter will be further developed as long as thw in-venue live-streaming features (5G, IOT smart devices, etc) are getting easy to be adopted.
Loss of Billions of Dollars for Content Creators and Distributors
Various studies have indicated significant displacement rates from piracy, whether it is the film, music, books, or television industry. All distribution models are affected, including streaming, physical purchases, and downloads. This is not just about the loss of revenues for you or your company. When you lose millions of potential customers, it results in loss of jobs, lesser taxes being paid, and a serious blow to creativity and innovation. Loss of income and taxes ultimately impacts the economy too. US Immigration and Customs Enforcement reports that piracy costs the US economy more than $29 billion each year.
But, the impact goes beyond the entertainment industry. Consumers who regularly visit piracy websites and apps are 3 times more likely to be exposed to malware. These apps have risky advertising that exposes consumers to fraud and malicious elements. For brands, this means reputational harm if any of their ads get involved in such activities.
Rise in Cybercrime Since the Pandemic
It is not only online piracy that is a cause for concern. The pandemic has led to a significant increase in cybersecurity breaches, and this trend is expected to continue in 2022. The average data breach cost for companies increased from $3.86 million in 2020 to $4.24 million in 2021, representing a 9.8% increase. As companies continue to support remote working models and drive efforts towards rapid digital transformation, hackers have access to more loopholes than ever before.
Your sensitive data is, therefore, at risk of being stolen or tampered with if you fail to increase your cybersecurity commitment and enhance protection measures. A major threat is expected to come from 14.6 billion connected devices in circulation by the end of 2021. This number is expected to grow 18% in 2022.
Children Exposed to More Online Risks
A disturbing trend has especially been observed where children are concerned. The pandemic led to an overnight shift to online education, and digital learning platforms have been instrumental in ensuring continuity of education for billions of kids worldwide. At the same time, it has also exposed children to cyberbullying, stalking, phishing, and other grave crimes. Around 80% of children across 25 countries report instances of sexual abuse and exploitation online.
Ensuring age-appropriate content is important for digital learning platforms. As a technology provider, you need the most stringent controls to not only prevent educational content piracy but to also protect the privacy of children online.
If you are wondering about the relation of this topic with the Digital Rights Management, the answer is very simple. It is all about secure your privcy on-line. Food for thought.
How Mediastalker Can Help
If any of the above situations feels close to home for you, we can help protect your online assets. Our easy-to-use, proprietary, plug-and-play AI/ML technology is backed by a skilled and experienced team. We help brands across different industries protect their media portfolios, live events, and broadcasts, so that they are accessible only from their source.
Mediastalker is dedicated to protecting the assets of talented content creators. We offer digital rights protection for the audio-visual media sector, protecting illegal streaming and distribution of your content anywhere in the world in real-time. We take pride in our cutting-edge solutions, which we constantly update to preserve your online identity and intellectual property.
With our client-centric approach, we ensure that you don’t need to spend time worrying about protecting your digital assets. Rather, use this time to grow your business and let us take care of your digital rights.Secure your assets now.