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Internet piracy is one of the greatest security concerns to face the world in quite a while. Both unwitting consumers that illegally try to procure these ill gotten gains, as well as the copyright holders who have a legal stake in making sure their product cannot be obtained in such a way, are vulnerable in this dark trade that has captivated the media ever since it began. Now, in the latest victory in the war against piracy, the owner of Kick Ass Torrents, Atrem Vaulin, has been arrested, and is being sought for extradition to the U.S.
Deadline ran down the basic details, in which the charges against Vaulin cite that the Ukranian citizen has caused over $1 billion in damages, via torrents of everything from movies and music to video games and TV shows. The arrest was made in Poland, a country that has an extradition treaty with the U.S., which means that Atrem Vaulin could be sent back to American soil to stand trial, seeing as the complaint was filed in Chicago and handled by the U.S. Department of Justice. While the arrest of Vaulin seems like a pretty big win, it does raise one big question: how effective will this arrest be in the war against piracy?
While Atrem Vaulin's arrest means that Kick Ass Torrents is in danger of shutting down in the near future, there are still plenty of sources of illegally disseminated digital goods that are still in operation. This arrest is definitely a win for those who are fighting piracy, however the fact that piracy doesn't seem to have an easy "endgame" solution that could curtail internet piracy once and for all makes us wonder just how this fight should be fought. Especially considering how ads like the one below have been trying to warn people about the deadly serious nature of piracy for over a decade now, and even the grave, clearly explained consequences still don't seem to be working as well as some would hope.
Internet piracy, no matter how you slice it, is illegal. So folks who run torrenting sites like Atrem Vaulin did are open targets for law enforcement, as they are, for lack of better terminology, the ring leaders of the internet piracy scourge. The prevailing theory would be that if Vaulin and other figures of in the higher echelon of internet piracy are apprehended, other major internet piracy hubs will be forced to close, thus eventually killing the threat of piracy. However, knowing the internet as the large and boundary-less marketplace of ideas and services that we've come to depend on, it's hard to know how extensive these measures must go before they start to make a notable difference.
There are no easy solutions in the fight against internet piracy, but at the very least it should be agreed upon that something does in fact need to be done about it. Let's just hope there's a solution that can be formulated before the rigorous efforts of law enforcement start to reach further than they should. For now, we'll keep you informed on any new developments on the Atrem Vaulin case as they become available.