Macau | CASBAA: Illegal content streaming devices more prevalent in Asia

Macau (MNA) – The use of illegal streaming devices (ISD’s) is more prevalent in Asian households than in Europe or the U.S., anti-piracy experts stated at the Cable and Satellite Broadcasting Association of Asia (CASBAA) Conference 2017 held at Studio City today.

ISD’s are devices that have been set up with software that enables consumers to stream audiovisual content from an illegal streaming server.

“There is no question that in the Asia-Pacific [region] ISD piracy is a larger portion of the [piracy] problem, meaning not exactly in terms of quantity but in terms of money removed from the operators and content-owners’ pockets. These services are very good, accessible and cheap to acquire. There’s also an enormous population that is unaware [of the legal issues] in Asia,” the Director of Intelligence & Security Operations at Cisco, Avigail Gutman, said.

The streaming devices can be set up in a way that allows consumers to easily access subscription TV, sports and films at prices well below legitimate services with payment either wrapped into the purchase price of the device or, alternatively, through regular subscription payments.

Ms. Gutman stated that Cisco research showed the cost for setting up an ISD-based pirate server with 1,000 subscribers and 1,000 channels could be as low as 2,000 euros per month and generate almost 12,000 euros of income per month.

“In April of 2017, ten major paid TV and content providers had relinquished 3.09 million euros per month to 285 ISD-based streaming pirate syndicates,” she added. 

According to the General Manager of the CASBAA Coalition Against Piracy (CAP), Neil Gane, while the percentage of households in the United Kingdom and the U.S. which used ISD’s reached around 13 per cent and 6 per cent, respectively, in Asia metropolises, such as Singapore that number reached 16 per cent.