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Spain's National Police says it has dismantled a pirate IPTV operation worth an estimated €1 million to its operators. A police video shows raids on various locations which resulted in the arrest of 12 individuals, four said to have captured signals with eight more acting as resellers of the service.

Raids, shutdowns, legal action, settlements, and even technical issues have caused many sellers of ‘pirate’ IPTV to shut down in recent months. The end to the problem for broadcasters, however, seems as far away as ever, with large numbers of providers and sellers managing to service the illicit market, despite serious setbacks. Hoping to make a dent in the supply chain, police in Spain say they have carried out an operation to “dismantle” a service that sourced raw TV streams and distributed them, supplied VOD content, and then sold packages to clients.

The investigation began in 2017 when officers of the Central Cybercrime Unit became aware of a Facebook page where access to pirate TV was being offered. Investigators determined that those behind the operation were capturing channels broadcast by the major TV outfits and uploading them to servers operated by different companies abroad. At the same time, they operated a sales and marketing division, to sell their product to the public. In total, 12 people were identified as suspects, with four people said to have been in charge of capturing the broadcast signals and distributing them, managing access to content, attracting customers, and collecting the cash through various platforms.