How many digital pirates are there in the world? 432m according to NetNames, in a new study commissioned by NBC Universal that attempts to size the online piracy market. The research claims that 432m people used the internet to access copyright-infringing material in January this year alone, accounting for nearly a quarter of all internet traffic. “The practice of infringement is tenacious and persistent. Despite some discrete instances of success in limiting infringement, the piracy universe not only persists in attracting more users year on year but hungrily consumes increasing amounts of bandwidth,” claims the report, identifying a 3% rise in the number of pirates between November 2011 and January 2013. The most popular forms of piracy, according to the report, are cyberlockers (210.6m users), BitTorrent (204.9m) and unlicensed video streaming sites (112m) – obviously, there is crossover between these.

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