Two of Britain’s major Internet Service Providers (ISPs) – TalkTalk and BT – have been told by the courts that they must cut off Internet access for users who repeatedly download illegal content such as music or movies. The 2010 Digital Economy Act included this provision, but ISPs have been fighting it in court. Traditionally ISPs have been seen as “mere conduits” of information, with no responsibility for type of content sent over their networks by their users. The new ruling requires companies to take action against customers who are identified as repeatedly downloading content that infringes copyright.
The case raises several important ITGS social and ethical issues. In order to determine which users have been downloading illegal material, ISPs will need to closely monitor the communications of all their users – something which raises significant privacy concerns. In addition to the financial impact caused by setting up this infrastructure, ISPs are concerned that such activities will dissuade users from using their services.
Source: PCPro article