McAfee files patent to help in fighting piracy - and making money of it?

A recently published patent from McAfee reveals that the company is working on technology to fight piracy. The patents show how the McAfee SiteAdvisor software detects sites that distribute pirated software. McAfee describes it as,  "a system and method for preventing an user from inadvertently or directly consuming illegal content on the Internet".

The patent continues with, "Optionally one or more alternative distribution sites (ie.a. authorized distribution site) for the same or similar material can be presented to the user."

In other words, the system detects that you're visiting a site that distributes illegal content,  shows you a warning and then allows you to visit that site or any alternatives given by the McAfee software. According to the patent the warning will say,  "This site may distribute content that violates copyright laws or distribution requirements. This may expose your information to non-intended parties among other security risks".

It's likely that McAfee will make deals with content distributors to direct users to legal content and receives a commission when an user decides to pay for that content. While for users who are looking for pirated content this will be a feature to turn off, it might be useful for enterprises. By preventing users from downloading pirated content when accessing the internet through their network,  they can avoid legal claims.

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