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Broadband users receiving letters warning them against filesharing are unlikely to engage in such activities further, it has been claimed.

Plans to fight digital piracy outlined by the government earlier this month have come under criticism in some quarters.

However, Ofcom believes that warning letters could have a beneficial impact on the prevalence of illegal downloading, particularly in cases where parents are unsure of what their children are doing.

Speaking to ZDNet UK, the regulator's chief executive Ed Richards said: "Letter-writing itself, if done properly, seems to have had a positive effect."

Under the proposals set forth in Digital Britain, internet service providers will be required to send letters to users suspected of illegal filesharing who are brought to their attention by rights holders.

Customer details will be shared with record companies and other rights holders in such situations, allowing them to pursue civil actions for copyright infringements.

Users caught filesharing could also find their broadband bandwidth capped by their ISPs in an attempt to curb further such illicit activity.

ZDNet UK reports that legislation required to bring such measures into effect will go before parliament first thing after the summer recess.

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