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A new series of copyright protection laws in New Zealand which penalise web surfers for the illegal acquisition of entertainment content and software could yet be seen in the UK, according to the UK's Federation Against Software Theft (FAST IiS).

The group has advocated the implementation of the new laws by broadband providers in the UK.

James Craig, legal counsel at FAST IiS, has explained that if ever adopted in the UK, the system would see broadband customers found to have downloaded copyrighted content warned several times before being cut off.

He commented: "This is definitely something the UK can look at, albeit with tightly-defined definitions. At FAST IiS we favour a three strikes and you're out policy.

"This allows a gradual build up of pressure on copyright infringers that ranges from notification of wrongdoing, possible reduction in bandwidth for a second offence, and termination of connection for persistent content thieves."

Mr Craig went on to concede that the system could be hard to enforce because of the risks associated with wrongly accusing innocent broadband customers.

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