Using expert monitoring to stop content fraud and boost revenue

Illegally redistributed content can cost broadcasters and rights owners millions of dollars each year, and disrupting this flow of fraudulent content is key to reducing subscriber churn and increasing revenue. But whilst the content protection industry is in agreement of the value of a robust protection programme, monitoring services and solutions differ vastly. With so many different kinds of solutions available, a content owner, broadcaster or rights holder might struggle to identify the content monitoring solution that suits them. To help, in this blog we’ll discuss key questions that you should ask your content monitoring provider, to help you understand if their service is truly effective at locating and disrupting fraud.

What exactly is content monitoring?

Getting back to the basics, it’s worth making sure that you have a solid understanding of what content monitoring and enforcement actually are. In essence, it is the process of automated and/or manual monitoring of various digital locations (websites, IPTV services, social media etc.) to locate and identify illegally obtained and distributed content. Monitoring and enforcement services are usually deployed to locate and take action against infringing content distribution; these services are also sometimes known as “piracy detection”.

There are also vastly different types of content monitoring. Some content monitoring is done manually, where large teams sit and physically monitor sites on the internet, using relatively standard internet browser tools and utilities to identify pirated content. Whilst this can be effective for low-volume searches, automated video capture and digital recognition software, enable highly effective monitoring at a huge scale within seconds. 

Can your solution disrupt revenue-damaging content fraud?

Like any service, your monitoring and enforcement solution needs to represent good value for money. So, does the service you’re considering actually disrupt fraud to the extent that content security measures have a positive effect on your bottom line? It’s an important question to ask to make sure that the content monitoring and IP enforcement provided will be effective in preserving your revenue. 

It’s useful to check with your prospective provider whether they have examples of successful operations with other customers, who operate similar platforms and face similar challenges, and what piracy sources they cover. Though important, it’s not enough to simply clean search results or have fraudulent content sites delisted from search engines.

To be able to disrupt fraud, your provider will also need to be industry experts who are well equipped to conduct ongoing monitoring of the most high-value live and on-demand content. Experts will have intelligence amassed over decades of protecting content, and such monitoring covers a broad range of piracy sources and fraudulent activities. These experts are well equipped with expertise, experience and specialised technologies to illustrate the scope of content fraud issues for your business.

Does your provider have the partners they need?

For a monitoring service to have effective enforcement and detection, it must work well with a wide range of partners. These include internet service providers (ISPs), social media platforms, law enforcement, and more. This will ensure they can leverage the widest range of discovery tools and process, and provide fast and efficient disruption of illegal activities once they’ve been identified.

Once you have ensured that your chosen solution is an established content protection expert and a trusted member of a wide network of organisations in the content security ecosystem, it’s time to ask the ‘deeper dive’ questions that will help you understand whether this provider’s solutions suit your revenue protection needs.

Does the solution have longevity?

Pirates are extremely inventive in their security circumvention attempts: they don’t have to pay for the expensive content they profit from, so can easily channel part of their illegal revenue towards their “R&D”, circumventing protective technology to ensure they maintain access to the content they sell. In turn, legitimate service providers need to ensure that their content protection and anti-piracy solutions are robust against vulnerabilities.

Make sure that your provider has the depth of knowledge and technology that accurately researches, captures, maps and analyses the constant evolution of tools and methods employed by pirates, not only to capture content but to circumvent the technology that protects against this. How rich is your chosen operator’s knowledge of the piracy landscape? Which tools do they have in their toolkit, and how much experience do they have of real-world content fraud?

Your security partner’s capability to protect your content against pirates’ changing tactics is key to them providing you with an ongoing, effective service. 

Can the solution operate accurately at a large scale?

While it’s important that your security partner is able to operate efficiently at very large scale, it’s equally important that the service is highly accurate. Legitimate content owners and service providers employing anti-piracy services need to ensure they won’t be incurring erroneous takedowns, especially when dealing with large volumes of content. Errors can result in your content being removed from authorised channels, or the removal of other legitimate content; this can create negative publicity and an undesirable impact on your relationship with distribution partners.

Understanding the processes and technologies an anti-piracy company uses is key to determining how accurate their services will prove. Learning how content is detected, whether there is a reliable and robust content verification process in place, what this process entails and what technologies are used, and the effectiveness of the remedial mechanisms – these are all important points to consider. They should also all be vetted through the lens of scale: it’s much easier to achieve accuracy with small numbers while large-scale operations present a much higher level of complexity.

A highly-scalable model that combines fingerprinting and other verification technologies for automated content identification, backed up by human oversight for cases that require deeper examination, is extremely efficient at identifying false positives and preventing takedown errors while 24/7 remedial mechanisms ensure a high level of responsiveness.

Want more help understanding how to choose a monitoring solution? Read more of our 12 questions to ask your monitoring provider below. 
Download our monitoring ebook

PPV sales feature image

It’s no secret that piracy causes significant revenue losses and impacts subscriptions, leaving rights holders and [...]

Get in Touch

Talk with one of our experts for more information or a demo.

Please enter your enquiry here:

* indicates mandatory field

Friend MTS Limited
177 Shaftesbury Avenue

UK: +44 203 588 2111
US: +1 267 382 4280