Viaccess-Orca: 20 Million Watched World Cup on Illegal Streams
3,200 takedown notices to pirate site owners
July 25, 2014
PARIS—Viaccess-Orca gathered piracy data during the World Cup that indicated as many as 20 million people watched it on illegal websites. VO said it released a series of reports with detailed
information about live-streaming piracy. Throughout a 32-day
period, Viaccess-Orca’s Eye on Piracy software monitored every match
during the World Cup to collect information about illegal streams, the sources of those
streams, and identifying illegal websites, all in real time.
Viaccess-Orca’s reports identified several important facts about piracy,
• The number of viewers on illegal streaming websites increased
during afternoon matches compared with evening ones based on the fact that most
European viewers were still at work without access to a TV set.
• There were a total of 20 million viewers on illegal websites during
the entire event.
• Viaccess-Orca sent more than 3,200 takedown notices to pirate site
• Sixty percent of the football event viewers streamed at least one
• Upon the start of the football competition, more than 10 new
content platforms appeared among the top five link farms.
Social media networks played a critical role during the football competition
both in a positive and negative way. According to Twitter, there were 618,725
tweets per minute at the end of the final match, which is a social media
record. However, Viaccess-Orca’s Eye on Piracy campaign identified that social
media networks such as Facebook and Twitter were used by specific piracy groups
and links. For example, out of 707 takedown notices sent to pirate site owners
during a single football match, 51 were sent to content platforms referenced on
Based on analysis from the campaign, Viaccess-Orca recommends that legal
streaming services should be made available by content rights holders to maximize viewing flexibility for subscribers. To optimize the
quality of the viewing experience, the size of the streaming service or CDN has
to be set and managed carefully considering certain viewing periods are busier
than others. The appropriate scalability measures should also be anticipated in
order to absorb any surges in demand.
Viaccess-Orca says its Eye on Piracy actively monitors live video restreaming
over the Internet: first by detecting streams suspected of piracy and
monitoring the content, then sending legal notices to pirates to cease and
desist. Finally, the service gathers proof of infringement and legal evidence
about the pirated activity.