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Illegal downloading in the UK on the rise

7.7 million people are reportedly shunning legal download sites

The number of people downloading music illegally is rising in the UK, according to new figures.

A new report commissioned by the British Recorded Music Industry (BPI) states that around 7.7 million people in the UK choose not to buy their music legally, with a total of 1.2 billion tracks illegally downloaded in 2010.

Speaking about the results of the report, BPI Chief Executive Geoff Taylor called illegal downloading a "parasite that threatens to deprive a generation of talented young people of their chance to make a career in music".

He added that new legislation is "urgently needed" over the matter, reports BBC News.

However, earlier this year the BPI revealed that the amount of money the music industry made from legal downloads was also on the rise. This year sales were at £154 million compared with £101.5 million in 2008.

According to the new report the amount of illegal downloads in 2010 has cost the UK music industry £219 million.

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