The Pirate Bay shutdown didn't slow piracy. In fact, according to McAfee, the number of new file-sharing sites hosting unauthorized, copyrighted content shot up in the past three months.
In their Third Quarter Threats Report, researchers at McAfee took a look at piracy scene. What they found was that cyber-criminals are taking advantage of The Pirate Bay shutdown to the tune of a 300 percent jump in the creation of file-sharing sites.
Over at V.i. Labs, which specializes in anti-piracy software, file hosting services are a significant piracy distribution threat. In a report earlier this year V.i. found that all the pirated product releases it searched for on search engines, index sites and BitTorrent tracking sites were available on Rapidshare, which has an Alexa traffic rank of 17 - a number that surpasses Amazon.com.
"There is little hope for organizations to eradicate references to the actually links to the pirated software on file hosting sites and other Web portals," said Victor DeMarines, vice president of products, V.i. Labs. "Organizations can try and scour the internet and write DMCA notices to these piracy channel sites, but given that pirated software can be renamed, re-packaged or zipped to bypass detection this is not feasible."
DeMarines said he would like to see the DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) Safe Harbor provisions tightened to crack down on sites like Rapidshare that profit through the distribution of pirated content.
"Notification of DMCA infringements place too much ownership on the copyright holders," he said. "By not providing any accountability for who is uploading and/or downloading content from these servers, file host provides a perfect medium to propagate pirated content. At a very minimum these services are used to advertise what the top downloaded files are to allow vendors or copyright owners to focus their review of what is available on these sites."