Users of this popular torrent service could be subpoenaed for watching one movie

PIA VPN running on a Macbook Pro

Ed:  We want to reassert the fact that It is a result of the disclosure from the torrent site that their users may be sued, not their use of PIA as the title implies. As the article states, it is their use of a VPN which is preventing them from being directly pursued by this legal issue - not as a result as it has been implied.

The makers of the 2019 action film ‘Angel Has Fallen’ have filed lawsuits against 17 individuals for allegedly downloading the title illegally. Although many of the defendants used VPN service Private Internet Access, they could still be at risk from the lawsuit.

Fallen Productions alleges that 14 of the defendants, whose identities are currently unknown, used the VPN to download the movie. Lawyers hope to use third-party subpoenas to find out the identities of the alleged pirates.

The case also relies on user information gleaned from popular pirate site YTS, echoing a copyright infringement case from earlier in the year. Back in August, it was reported that the makers of Hollywood films including ‘Rambo: Last Blood’ and ‘Hellboy’ had used a YTS user database to support their case.

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Still at risk

Kerry Culpepper, the attorney in the ‘Angel Has Fallen’ case, has requested subpoenas to secure more information from email providers, ISPs and Private Internet Access. The difficulty facing Culpepper is that Private Internet Access has a ‘no logs’ policy, one that has been confirmed during previous legal proceedings.

“Private Internet Access has not received a subpoena in regards to this case,” the VPN provider commented to Torrent Freak. “Even if we do, our response will be the same as always: PIA does not log VPN user activity.”

Nevertheless, it doesn’t seem like this case is going to quietly fade away. All the defendants have reportedly received at least one DMCA notice and email addresses are known in some instances. As the case continues, it may be that the filmmakers have enough information to push for a conviction even without any involvement from Private Internet Access.

Via Torrent Freak

Barclay Ballard

Barclay has been writing about technology for a decade, starting out as a freelancer with ITProPortal covering everything from London’s start-up scene to comparisons of the best cloud storage services.  After that, he spent some time as the managing editor of an online outlet focusing on cloud computing, furthering his interest in virtualization, Big Data, and the Internet of Things.