Police in Abu Dhabi have arrested three people and raided several shops in a large-scale campaign against TV piracy.
Officers closed three stores in raids on electronic stores in Electra Street and also seized 202 devices.
This comes after a complaint from the service provider, OSN, that piracy at some stores is facilitated.
Electra Street is known for its bustling network of small shops selling legitimate electronics, satellite dishes and TVs. But authorities have previously found that some stores are violating the law.
“Piracy is causing enormous losses for the entertainment industry, the authorities and the end users,” said Hanif Khan, director of anti-piracy and content security at OSN.
“Two of these three stores have been raided before and that means people can expect much harsher and fines if they engage in these harmful activities,” he said.
“We still have a long way to go to reduce piracy in the region.”
According to OSN, piracy costs the Middle East and North Africa’s entertainment industry up to $ 750 million annually, a number that has increased due to Covid-19 closures. The company said it had noticed an increase in delivery of pirated applications used to view the content and channels illegally. OSN said it had removed more than 380,000 pirated content links online this year, conducted 43 raids across the region, and confiscated thousands of boxes along with illegal maps.
OSN teams supported police during the raid, which took place earlier this month. An exact date has not been announced. Police in Abu Dhabi have said they are committed to eradicating piracy and have urged the public to use only authorized distributors to prevent commercial fraud.
Source: The National