Ever since the OTT platforms have become the primary source of our entertainment, these platforms are scaling up their content quality as well as quantity. People are exposing themselves to malicious software in the race to be among the first to watch the new episode of a popular online series or simply to save money on the cost of buying a legitimate streaming app. Several investigations have found that many piracy apps are actually loaded with malware that steals users’ usernames and passwords.
Piracy nexus in India
Customers are being given free access to original content that is being stolen by Google Play Store apps like Picshow, Momix, and Popcorn Flix from OTT services like Netflix and Amazon. The pirated content appears on these pirated apps just a few hours after it premieres on the major OTT platform in the nation. Social media networks like WhatsApp and Telegram also help these apps grow in popularity. These unlawfully run applications or platforms not only have cricket but also nearly all premium television, Bollywood, Hollywood, and radio programming.
In terms of actual action, the Mumbai Police have only so far detained the owner of THOP TV and one of his associates. In addition, TamilRockers, Tamilmav, the Tamil Blasters website, and the Picshow app have been sued by Disney Hotstar in Chennai.
Privacy breach threat
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These piracy apps ask for a lot of permissions, which people generally give without giving much heed. These apps then access all your private information like messages, call records, financial transactions, etc. This data is then sold on the black market without your consent.
Some apps even charge you
The unique aspect is that these applications have a larger subscriber base than some of the original OTT platforms. Some have started charging money for posting the stolen content as a result of this. These apps charge between 30 and 50 rupees a month for selling stolen stuff.
Why it is difficult to bust piracy?
The fact that many of these apps are open-source apps and the biggest challenge is that such apps are outside the purview of regulation. Authorities are aware of these apps but are unable to disable them. Authorities report this to Google, Facebook, and Twitter, but nearly never receive a timely response from them. In just one click, one can find these apps on Google, Facebook, Telegram and other search platforms.
Additionally, many other nations are running the apps that are available on the Play Store. This is known to even the cyber cell, but it is out of reach. However, consumers are not reporting because they are too greedy to view the newest movies or webseries for free.