Ironically, despite the jailing of the men behind the Starview fraud, the set-top box manufacturer, Irumtek, based in Korea, is believed to have made the most money from the operation.
While Paul Hartrick pleaded that he had only sold 1,500 of the boxes, police believe at least 12,000 modified boxes were sold.
Knowing Sky's (understandable) strong protection of their service, I wonder how and when they might do something to combat this activity.
Difficult to see what they can do really, since the boxes are all getting their decoding info from a server somewhere on the internet, to which a legitimate Sky card is attached.
Police estimate that the men were able to gain around £100,000 through running Starview, with Virgin Media estimating the equivalence in lost subscriptions at £32 million.
Any card that is used for this is a legit sky card meaning that when sky find a card that is being used it is tied to a name, address and even a bank account number.It does appear on the surface that it would be very difficult to combat it, since there's no way of knowing who has the original card; of course if Sky were to follow up every advertisement for the equipment, and even perhaps order one, they could then maybe trace back, via the IP number of the server, where the card reader is.However that might just be a server somewhere, not necessarily at the perpetrator's abode.Link that with publicity that people buying and using these illegal boxes may also face prosecution, and you might scare the market off. The boxes are not illegal as far as I'm aware, even watching Sky TV on these boxes isn't illegal (it just breaks their terms of service for using modified software I presume).The illegal part is the resharing part if thats even illegal at all.