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Police swoop closes down Finland’s largest file download site

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The National Bureau of Investigation, Finland’s central criminal police, have shut down the country's largest file-sharing server, which specialises in the peer-to-peer transfer of music-, film-, and software files using BitTorrent.
      Police made more than a dozen searches of properties occupied by people involved in the Finreactor online operation around the country. The site was obliged to close after machines and hard drives were confiscated.
      Police believe that as many as 6,000 different torrents or products have been distributed illegally and in breach of copyright through the site in the past couple of years. The number of users is thought to be in excess of 10,000.
The police were on this occasion acting on a request from the Business Software Alliance, representing the rights of the software manufacturers. Those who may possibly face charges arising out of the raids, which were also held in several other European countries on Wednesday, could be looking at anything from fines to a maximum of two years’ imprisonment.
      File-swapping networks are a cause of concern for the recording and the movie industry as well as for software makers, and concerted efforts are being made to stamp out piracy, including the peer-to-peer sharing of files - the downloading of music or other material illegally.
      Broadband connections and faster speeds have made it quite feasible to download high quality recordings (not merely low-grade MP3 files) and entire movies or television programmes, often before they are aired or released in the countries concerned.

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Helsingin Sanomat

  16.12.2004 - TODAY
 Police swoop closes down Finland’s largest file download site

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