Megaupload shut down

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Avatar for rapsantos
3 years ago
Topics: 2021, World, History, Computer, Crime, ...

On this day (January 19). 9 years ago. One of the most popular file-sharing websites was shut down by the U.S. Department of Justice and commenced criminal cases against its owners and others. The following day, Hong Kong Customs froze more than HK$300 million (US$39 million) assets belonging to the company. How did a file-sharing website was taken down by the U.S. Dept. of Justice, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Intellectual Property Rights.

When the website started?

It was established in 2005 providing online services for file storage and viewing, created by Kim Schmitz who is residing in New Zealand, and it is based in Wan Chai, Hong Kong. Services offered by the website were the following:

  • Megaupload.com - one-click hosting service

  • Megapix.com - image hosting

  • Megavideo.com / Megalive.com - video hosting service

  • Megabox.com - music hosting service

As the website was becoming popular, more services were created.

What were the charges?

Federal Prosecutors in the State of Virginia shut Megaupload, Kim Schmitz, and other owners of Megaupload were charged for violating copyright infringement and anti-piracy laws. A day after following the charges, Kim and other executives were arrested by the New Zealand Police as requested by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. $17 million assets were seized, from artworks to cars. Kim denies any criminal activities and all allegations against him.

The Aftermath? Is it still active?

All Megaupload users were worried if they would still be able to use the website to upload their files from the cloud. Following the shutdown, the site led to denial-of-service attacks to different websites handled by government agencies in the U.S. by hacktivist group Anonymous.

It re-launched 8 years ago as Mega (January 19, 2013, a year after the websites' takedown by government agencies in the U.S.). It depends on your location if you can still access the website.

Sources:

Lead Image from https://www.slashgear.com/megaupload-to-return-in-2017-with-restored-user-database-11447836/

https://www.britannica.com/topic/Megaupload

https://www.npr.org/sections/therecord/2012/01/20/145474712/megaupload-shut-down-by-the-fbi

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Avatar for rapsantos
3 years ago
Topics: 2021, World, History, Computer, Crime, ...

Comments

On this day, 9 years ago, a popular file-sharing website faced a significant setback when it was shut down by the U.S. Department of Justice, leading to criminal cases against its owners and others involved. The U.S. government, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Intellectual Property Rights organizations, played a role in this action. The https://smartpapers.net/ , established in 2005 by Kim Schmitz in Hong Kong, provided various online services for file storage, viewing, and sharing. It gained popularity over time, leading to additional services being created. The charges brought against Megaupload and its owners were related to copyright infringement and anti-piracy laws and I read some explain with The aftermath of the shutdown resulted in concerns among users about the availability of their uploaded files. Additionally, hacktivist group Anonymous launched denial-of-service attacks on different U.S. government agency websites in response. Although the original website remains inactive, it was re-launched as Mega in 2013, with accessibility depending on one's location.

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