LOS ANGELES – The Alliance for Creativity and Entertainment (ACE), the world’s leading anti-piracy coalition, has achieved a landmark victory for content creators after working with Egyptian authorities to shut down the largest piracy ring in the Middle East-North Africa (MENA) region.
Operating since at least 2015, the Shahed4U ring was based in Alexandria and Cairo, Egypt. More than 25 percent of the traffic came from Egypt, with the rest in Saudi Arabia, Algeria, Turkey, and Jordan.
Shahed4U offered a total of 68,000 pirated TV series titles and 18,700 film titles affecting all ACE members and other local content creators. The service drew a staggering 155 million visits per month (all domains combined), marking a milestone for ACE as its largest-ever takedown in the MENA region.
As of February 2022, the Shahed4U piracy ring comprised more than 118 domains and multiple copycat sites.
With the recent closures of piracy sites Egybest and MyCima, the action against Shahed4U marks the closure of the three top piracy networks in the MENA region and Arabic speaking countries globally.
“This spate of unprecedented ACE actions in the MENA region underscores our ever-expanding global reach and our growing relationships with law enforcement and local industry around the world,” said Charles Rivkin, Chairman and CEO of the Motion Picture Association and Chairman of ACE. “Developing and deepening these local and regional connections, while building on the MPA’s decades of counter-piracy experience, is core to ACE’s global goal of eradicating the illegal distribution of content and protecting the legal marketplace for content creators.”
Jan van Voorn, Executive Vice President and Global Content Protection Chief of the MPA and Head of ACE, said he is grateful for the support of Egyptian authorities in helping to eliminate these longstanding illegal networks.
“With this latest action, ACE has delivered a tremendous blow to illegal operators and further reinforced our commitment to shutting down piracy operators worldwide,” said van Voorn. “The trendline is clear: We are making solid progress protecting the legal creative marketplace and sending a clear signal to large-scale piracy operators that your days are numbered.”
ACE worked closely with MENA broadcast media companies OSN and MBC on the Shahed4U takedown.
“The shutting down of these sites is a great step towards the protection of rights within the media industry and a key effort towards growing the creative ecosystem within the region and globally,” said Joe Kawkabani, CEO of OSN.
Natasha Matos-Hemingway, Chief Commercial and Marketing Officer at Shahid, the world’s largest Arabic streaming platform by MBC GROUP, commented, “We’re incredibly grateful to ACE and the Egyptian authorities for their dedication towards cracking down on piracy. This is a significant victory for content creators, studios, and production houses who work tirelessly to produce quality TV series and films. This latest action, along with the recent closures of Egybest and MyCima, demonstrates ACE’s continued commitment to protecting the intellectual property rights of our producers.”
About The Alliance for Creativity and Entertainment
The Alliance for Creativity and Entertainment (ACE) is the world’s leading coalition dedicated to protecting the dynamic legal market and reducing digital piracy. Driven by a comprehensive approach to addressing piracy through criminal referrals, civil litigation and cease-and-desist operations, ACE has achieved many successful global enforcement actions against illegal streaming services and sources of unauthorized content and their operators. Drawing upon the collective expertise and resources of more than 50 media and entertainment companies around the world and reinforced by the content protection operations of the Motion Picture Association, ACE protects the creativity and innovation that drive the global growth of core copyright and entertainment industries. The current governing board members for ACE are Amazon, Apple TV+, NBCUniversal, Netflix Studios LLC, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Paramount, Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures, and Warner Bros. Charles Rivkin is Chairman and CEO of the Motion Picture Association and Chairman of ACE. For more information, please visit www.alliance4creativity.com.
ACE Media Contact