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Korea, South America to hit TV pirates hard

South Korean TV networks are upping their offensive against peer-to-peer pirates, threatening legal action should file-sharing sites fail to remove illegal videos from their networks, Advanced TV reports.

The Internet units of the country’s three national television channels – KBS, MBC and SBS have jointly issued a warning to 79 peer-to-peer and ‘Web hard’ online storage services they accuse of being the most severe copyright violators.

The 79 Internet companies named by the television networks include SK Communications, the operator of Nate, the country’s third-most popular search site, and Cyworld, a popular social networking service.

Meanwhile, there are an estimated 200,000 pirate set-top boxes in use in Chile, Venezuela, Peru and Colombia today. Tomorrow many of them will be useless if the scheme mooted by the region’s pay-TV operators have their way.

Starting immediately, broadcasters will address the widespread software hacking which permits users to access up to 200 channels. Nagra Kudelski, the leading player in access control systems and in secure management and content solutions is reportedly participating in the action, which traditionally involves electronic counter-measures to disable hacked smart cards.

The disabling action will continue until October 22nd.