Egyptian police, ACE shut down major piracy service in MENA

The Egyptian police, in collaboration with the Alliance for Creativity and Entertainment (ACE), has shut down CimaClub, one of the largest piracy services in the Middle East-North Africa (MENA) region.ACE is the world’s leading anti-piracy organisation. CimaClub enabled users to directly download or stream pirated content, offering a VOD library of nearly 50,000 movie and TV series titles in Arabic and their original versions. All ACE members were affected.The service attracted more than 29 million monthly visits through its 65 domains. Most of the traffic originated from Egypt, France, Canada, the United States and Germany.Egyptian police identified and confronted the operator in Giza, Egypt.“ACE remains persistent in cracking down on piracy, collaborating closely with authorities to pinpoint unlawful operators in the MENA region,” said Natasha Matos-Hemingway, Chief Commercial and Marketing Officer at Shahid, a leading Arabic streaming platform by MBC GROUP and ACE member. “This wouldn’t be possible without the assistance of the Egyptian authorities involved, who work diligently to prevent illegal content sharing, and we are grateful to both. It’s no secret that piracy results in tremendous losses, not only for broadcasters, but for production companies and emerging content creators as well. At MBC GROUP, we remain aligned with ACE in its ongoing mission to protect the intellectual property rights of our creators. We are grateful to the Alliance for their great work throughout the year, and we look forward to continuing to fight content piracy together.”“Content piracy has severe implications across the entertainment value chain,” said Fiona Robertson, General Counsel of OSN, a member of ACE. “As one of the leading entertainment companies in the region, we are committed to protecting the rights of all content creators by working closely with law enforcement and regulatory authorities in our operational markets.”“We applaud the Egyptian police for their swift action in identifying the operator of one of the most notorious piracy services in the MENA region,” said Jan van Voorn, Executive Vice President and Chief of Global Content Protection for the Motion Picture Association and Head of ACE. “The sheer breadth of this illegal operation affected every ACE member, compromising the intellectual property of numerous creators and content owners. Today’s action underscores the power of a global and joint effort to protect the integrity of the creative marketplace.”

Egypt shuts down second-largest piracy ring in Middle East

MyCima, the second-largest piracy operation in the Middle East region, was shut down by the Egyptian authorities following a referral from the Alliance for Creativity and Entertainment (ACE), the world’s largest and most effective anti-piracy coalition.Based in Alexandria, Egypt, the illegal service averaged more than 55 million visits per month prior to its shutdown and comprised more than 70 domains and numerous copycats. Some 12,000 movies and 26,000 TV series, including content from all ACE members, were offered for direct download or streaming.“The latest shut-down in the Middle East reinforces the fact that no matter where in the world they are, criminal distributors of pirated content can’t hide,” said Jan van Voorn, Executive Vice President and Global Content Protection Chief for the Motion Picture Association and Head of ACE. “Whether they operate on a global or national level, these operators will have to face the consequences of their illegal actions. We applaud the action taken by the Egyptian authorities and look forward to supporting them in further actions. We would also like to thank the Prime Minister and the Ministry of Internal Affairs for their work in the investigation and protection of intellectual property rights.”ACE partnered with two of its new MENA-based members, OSN and MBC GROUP, on this action.“The shutdown of MyCima is a significant victory for the entertainment industry and sends a strong message to those who engage in the illegal distribution of content. As a member of ACE, OSN is committed to protecting the rights of content creators and producers and will continue to support actions that combat piracy in the region,” said Joe Kawkabani, Chief Executive Officer of OSN, a leading MENA provider of premium global and local content. “Through collaboration and collective efforts, we will protect the creativity and innovation that drives the global growth of our industry.”Natasha Matos-Hemingway, Chief Commercial and Marketing Officer at Shahid, a leading Arabic streaming platform by MBC GROUP, added: “MyCima was identified as one of the top pirating websites that was streaming our content illegally. Unsurprisingly, this affected our business as it would affect any media production company in the region.We have successfully managed to block more than 121 websites in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and more than 26 websites in the United Arab Emirates. Together with ACE, our efforts towards terminating these illegal platforms will help discourage and decrease the number of pirates stealing our content.”