Croydon shopper finds illegal file sharing on department store computer
Department store bosses have launched an investigation after a shopper discovered illegal file sharing on a display computer.
Copies of the complete series of critically-acclaimed American drama The Wire, the Spiderman trilogy and Disney’s Ratatouille were found being shared and downloaded through the computer programme Vuze by a shopper at House of Fraser last week.
Staff at the department store’s HQ have ordered the removal of a £1,000 iMac computer, which was on display in the Croydon branch in Centrale shopping centre, while they investigate.
A log of activity on Vuze showed file-sharing had been taking place for more than a month.
Robert Clark, who discovered the programme while browsing for a new computer, said: “It’s pretty embarrassing – I can only think a member of staff has set it up as it is completely illegal.”
Copyright laws prevent people from sharing media files such as films and music over the internet.
There have been a number of high profile prosecutions of individuals caught breaking these copyright laws.
Earlier this year the Government opted against outlawing file-sharing websites, but from next year plans to send warning letters to households discovered to be infringing on copyright laws by sharing protected products.
A spokesman for House of Fraser said: “It has been brought to House of Fraser’s attention that a small number of illegal film and television downloads have been processed via file-sharing software on one of the demo computers in our Croydon store.
“The computer was immediately removed from the shop floor.
“The store is currently investigating the issue and will look at appropriate measures to ensure it is not repeated.”