Government pledge a further £3m to crackdown on illegal downloading in the UK

London Police unit have investigated more than £29m worth of intellectual property crime since 2013

The UK government has pledged a further £3m to the City of London Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit (PIPCU) in their bid to tackle digital piracy.

The announcement was made by Minister for Intellectual Property, Baroness Neville-Rolfe’s at the Anti-Counterfeiting Group Conference in London. The unit has now been operating for one year and this new funding will cover the next two years, up to 2017.

Baroness Neville-Rolfe said of the pledge, “We’ve seen significant success in PIPCU’s first year of operation. This extra support for will help the unit to build on this impressive record in the fight against intellectual property crime, which costs the UK at least £1.3 billion a year in lost profits and taxes. With more money now being invested in ideas than factories or machinery in the UK, it is vital that we protect creators and consumers and the UK’s economic growth.”

City of London Police Commander Steve Head, who is the Police National Coordinator for Economic Crime, added: “The Government committing to fund the Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit until 2017 is fantastic news for the City of London Police and the Creative Industries, and very bad news for those that seek to make capital through intellectual property crime.”

Following the announcement that Government would commit to funding the City of London Police’s IP Crime Unit until 2017, the Alliance for Intellectual Property Director General Eddy Leviten said:

“We are delighted that PIPCU has secured additional funding of £3million, allowing it to continue the excellent work of tackling IP crime in all forms. In its first year PIPCU has shown itself to be at the forefront of innovative solutions to disrupt criminal activity, protect UK jobs and help IP be the driving force for the UK economy.

PIPCU is now an integral part of the enforcement landscape but we also need to ensure that trading standards, National Crime Agency and others are equipped to play their own vital roles protecting consumers and targeting criminal activity.”

Since its launch in September 2013, PIPCU has investigated more than £29m worth of intellectual property crime and has suspended 2,359 internet domain names as well as diverting more than five million visits from copyright infringing sites to the PIPCU domain suspension page