American authorities have seized additional domain names, this time in relation to sites that illegally stream sporting events. Sites selling counterfeited products have also been seized.
The USA continues to clean up the web, fighting against sites that are implicated in counterfeited products. This big sweep includes sites selling counterfeited products (clothes, watches); illegal downloads and sites providing illegal streams.
Operation "In Our Sites" has been conducted by American authorities with a numerous of waves. Initiated in October 2011, one of these waves: "Operation Fake Sweep" has taken place with 307 web sites seized. Since the beginning of "In Our Sites" in June 2010, 669 domain names have been seized.
Among the 307 sites, 16 are linked to illegal sports streams. Sites like FirstRowSports with their .com, .net and .tv extensions which offered a wide range of live sports events for free on the internet have been attacked, with televised sporting events being protected by copyright laws. TorrentFreak notes that this is the first time that a .tv domain name which belongs to the country of Tuval has been seized, pointing out that it is managed by VeriSign (an enterprise based in the United States). It would appear that access to FirstRowSports.eu is still available.
A 28 year old man, Yonjo Quiroa was arrested in Michigan. He has been accused of being behind these 16 sites which he operated from his home. Through commercial links and advertising, he managed to amass close to 13 000 dollars in earnings.
The other 291 sites were implicated in the sale and distribution of counterfeited American football merchandise. It is not just a coincidence that American authorities have swooped now, with the Super Bowl (the final of the NFL) taking place on the 5th of February.
Following the raid, American customs authorities indicated that they had confiscated 4.8 million dollars’ worth of counterfeited goods.