FBI cracking down on Android piracy, three ‘black markets’ seized

August 22, 2012
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Calm down, we haven’t done anything wrong. But it seems developers aren’t the only ones who are paying attention to the discourse on piracy on Android, which some put down to the open-source nature of the platform. The Federal Bureau of Investigation – alongside other law enforcement officials – has taken what is said to be the first ever action against websites that offer illegal copies of Android apps.

The three pirate websites that were shut down and seized by FBI are applanet.net, appbucket.net, and snappzmarket.com. The bureau is also issuing search warrants for nine wanted individuals related to the websites in the country.

According to the Justice Department, which executed the seizure orders against the three websites, law enforcement officials from the Netherlands and France were involved in the operation to help secure evidence of the apps that were stored in servers outside of the U.S. – making it pretty much a global-scale operation.

In a statement, assistant attorney general for the DoJ’s Criminal Division Lanny A. Breuer said that mobile apps have become an important part of the country’s economy and creative culture:

“The criminal division is committed to working with our law enforcement partners to protect the creators of these apps and other forms of intellectual property from those who seek to steal it.”

We can think of a few more popular piracy destinations on the internet outside of the three that were taken down. So this first operation may just be a tip of the iceberg of what’s to come. Any thoughts and comments on the Android piracy crack down  by the FBI?

 

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