Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

More arrests, computers seized in FBI piracy bust

Filed under
Web

The Justice Department seized hundreds of computers and arrested four people in an international crackdown on Internet pirates illegally distributing copyrighted video games, software and first-run movies, such as the latest episode of "Star Wars."

Agents executed 90 search warrants in the United States and 10 other countries as part of Operation Site Down. The raids, which began Wednesday, shut down at least eight major online distributors and seized pirated works worth more than $50 million, authorities said.

At a news conference Thursday, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales credited the busts with "striking at the top of the copyright piracy supply chain." Gonzales said the piracy rings are responsible for providing ``the vast majority of the illegal digital content now available online.''

Online piracy rings are known as "warez," pronounced ``wares.'' They function as underground cyberspace co-ops, in which members swap the latest copyrighted material. Warez groups are notoriously difficult to penetrate. Many are based overseas and users are tech-savvy, communicating in encrypted messages and requiring codes and passwords.

FBI agents infiltrated the secretive community by setting up servers and offering large amounts of computer space for members to store stolen material, according to court papers filed in U.S. District Court in the Northern District of California.

Pirated material soon poured onto the FBI server, including "Batman Begins," "Bewitched" and "Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith," which arrived just hours after it opened in movie theaters across the country.

The federal operation targeted "first-providers," or those who provide the copyrighted work to the groups.

Arrested were: William Venya, 34, of Chatsworth; Chirayu Patel, 23, of Fremont; Nate Lovell, 22, of Boulder, Colo.; and David Fish, 24, of Watertown, Conn. Criminal complaints charged each with copyright infringement and conspiracy to commit criminal copyright infringement.

The four have been ordered to appear July 14 before U.S. Magistrate Judge Howard R. Lloyd in San Jose.

By Shannon McCaffrey
Knight Ridder

More in Tux Machines

​Red Hat buys into Docker containers with Atomic Host

Not much over a year ago, few people knew about containers, and fewer still knew about Docker. Since then, the idea of building server and applications out of container-based micro-servers, has exploded in popularity. Red Hat has been watching this and now with Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 Atomic Host (RHELAH) the company has its own operating system/container pairing to offer the business world. Read more

VMware heads to court over GPL violations

The Software Freedom Conservancy alleges that VMware is using GPL-licensed code in its proprietary products Read more

5 awesome security features to expect in PC-BSD 10.1.2

Five of those security and security-related features were announced today and are on track to be included in the next edition, which should be PC-BSD 10.1.2. They are PersonaCrypt – a command line utility to backup a user’s home directory to an encrypted external media Tor Mode in System Updater Tray Stealth Mode in PersonaCrypt Ports now use LibreSSL by default instead of OpenSSL Support for encrypted backups in Life-Preserver utility Read more

COM Express module runs Linux on a 2.3GHz Tegra K1

Seco is prepping a Linux-friendly COM Express Type 6 Compact module with a quad-core, 2.3GHz Tegra K1 SoC and optional extended temperature support. When we covered the Nvidia Jetson TK1 single board computer last March, we didn’t realize the manufacturer was Seco. In addition to the Jetson TK1 (Seco product page here), Seco is now adding a COM Express Type 6 Compact computer-on-module called the SECOMExp-TK1, which similarly runs Linux on an Nvidia Tegra K1 SoC. Read more