Government’s blocking efforts helps drive streaming piracy down in Malaysia by 64%

The number of Malaysian consumers accessing piracy websites over the past 12 months has decreased 64%, according to a survey commissioned by the Asia Video Industry Association’s Coalition Against Piracy (CAP) and conducted by YouGov.

The survey found that 22% of online consumers currently use piracy streaming websites or torrent websites to view pirated content, substantially less than the 61% from a similar survey conducted last August. There was also a 61% reduction in the number of consumers who use an illicit streaming device when compared to last year's survey.

Meanwhile, 55% of online consumers noticed that a piracy service had been blocked by the Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs (MDTCA). According to the survey, this appeared to have had an impact on consumer attitudes towards piracy, with 49% stating that they would no longer access piracy services and 40% stating that they now rarely accessed piracy services as a result of not being able to access blocked piracy sites. On the other hand, 11% of consumers said it made no difference to their viewing habits.

The survey also found that 20% of consumers who said they were aware of the government blocking piracy websites and illicit application domains have since subscribed to a paid streaming service, while 15% said they now spend more time viewing free local streaming services. Majority of those surveyed (65%) now predominantly watch free international streaming services. When asked about the negative consequences of online piracy, consumers placed funding crime groups (57%) , loss of jobs in the creative industry (52%) and malware risks (42%) as their top three concerns.

Neil Gane, GM of AVIA’s CAP said it applauds the MDTCA for disrupting piracy website networks which are being monetised by crime syndicates. "Consumers who subscribe to illicit IPTV services or access piracy streaming sites are wasting their time and money when the channels and websites stop working. Piracy services do not come with a ‘service guarantee’, no matter what their ‘sales pitch’ may claim," he added.

On the issue of piracy, the Premier League recently rolled out a regional campaign in Malaysia, Indonesia and Hong Kong to tackle the issue. Done in collaboration with DDB Worldwide, the campaign aims to raise awareness of the compromised viewing quality and risks faced by fans watching football matches via illegal streams. The campaign runs across digital platforms and will emphasise on the dangers illegal streams pose to fans, as well as poor viewing experiences. Some of the cons of illegal streams include delays, broken links, pop-up ads, as well as malware and ransomware.

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