Police launch advert replacement on illegal websites

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Working in collaboration with Project Sunblock, a content verification technology provider, police banners are now replacing a wide range of legitimate brand adverts on infringing websites. The pop-up will inform the user that the website is under investigation by the City of London Police unit for copyright infringement and will advise the user to exit the website.

This innovative step is the latest phase of Operation Creative, a pioneering initiative designed to disrupt and prevent websites from providing unauthorised access to copyrighted content, led by PIPCU in partnership with the creative and advertising industries.

The sites where these new banners will feature have been identified and reported to PIPCU by rights holders who provide a detailed package of evidence indicating how the site is involved in illegal copyright infringement.

CEO of Project Sunblock, Duncan Trigg said:

“Protecting brands online is at the heart of what we do, so we’re delighted to be selected to help the police tackle online piracy and bring about a safer marketplace for advertisers in the UK. Without realising it, advertisers are allowing their brands to be associated with illegal sites, and regrettably, this happens more often than it should.

But each time it does, brands are effectively putting money in the back pocket of criminals. As advertisers funnel more money into online spend, initiatives like this are crucial to safeguarding their brands as well as their budget.”

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