Pirates target Telefonica's Brazilian DTH platform
December 17, 2008
From Branislav Pekic in Rome
Launched last year, Brazilian DTH platform TelefÃ´nica TV Digital, which has some 280,000 subscribers in the State of SÃ£o Paulo, has become the target of pirates.
According to the Brazilian Association of Pay Television Operators (ABTA), the Nagra 2 encryption system, used by Telefonica, has been hacked by pirates. The encrypted channels are now being received from the Amazonas satellite (61 Â°W) free of charge, using the Azbox, a digital box manufactured in South Korea which costs BRL 500 (around USD 250). It seems that the hackers uploaded the access codes for the pay-TV channels on the internet, which can then be transferred to the digital box via a pen drive.
Although the encryption system was hacked up to six months ago, Telefonica believes that the proportion of pirate access on its subscriber base is still small. The director for Latin America, Pedro Luis Planas, says that the access codes are now being changed once a week, with a software solution for the problem expected in one months time.