Dutch Court orders ISP to hand over site owner’s identity

February 2007


The Dutch courts have traditionally been keen to protect privacy – even of suspected file-sharers and even the names of people behind websites accused of copyright violation. But the content owner lobby scored a victory last week when ISP KPN was ordered to tell anti-piracy body BREIN the names of the people behind Dutchtorrent.org, which offered sign up subscribers access to a whole range of illegal content sources. The owners of that site have managed to remain anonymous, but their server is linked to the net via KPN. The ISP had so far refused to close down the site or to reveal the identity of Dutchtorrent.org’s owners, preventing BREIN from taking legal action against them. The latest court ruling means KPN will now have to hand over those owners’ contact details, so direct litigation against the site can begin. The ruling also means KPN will have to close down the site – although by the time the ruling was made the site was already down “due to technical problems”. However, an announcement from the site promised it would return “as soon as the brainstorm is over”, so the courts have ruled KPN must act to block access to the site if and when it goes live again.www.cmumusicnetwork.co.uk

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