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USTR “Notorious Markets” Report Highlights Scourge of Internet Piracy and Counterfeiting

First annual review names some of the most highly trafficked websites in the world

Washington — February 28, 2011 —

US Trade Representative Ron Kirk today released the first annual report on so-called “notorious markets,” which include online and physical locations around the world where piracy and counterfeiting of software and other products is rampant. The report exposes more than a dozen websites as hotbeds for illegal distribution of products that are subject to copyrights and trademarks.

“This report throws a bright spotlight on one of the most serious issues facing the software industry,” said BSA President and CEO Robert Holleyman. “Whether these sites deal in illegal downloads or mail-order counterfeits, they harm commercial software developers, displace legitimate sales and undermine good jobs and tax revenues.”

Among the sites listed in the USTR report is Taobao, a business-to-business and business-to-consumer site that ranked in the top five most-visited sites in China. Also listed were BitTorrent indexing sites like ThePirateBay, which recently ranked in the top 100 websites in global and US traffic, and BitTorrent trackers such as Rutracker, which ranked among Russia’s 15 most-visited sites.

“Many of these of sites are making money by selling other people’s property, openly spurning international laws,” said Holleyman. “They also harm consumers by exposing them to identity theft, software viruses and other malicious computer code.”

“This report underscores why recent federal crackdowns on website domains involved in selling counterfeit goods are necessary,” Holleyman added.

Previous reviews of “notorious markets” were included in the US government’s annual Special 301 Report. This year’s review was the first to be conducted separately at the recommendation of US Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator Victoria Espinel in the 2010 Joint Strategic Plan on Intellectual Property Enforcement.

About BSA

The Business Software Alliance ( is the world’s foremost advocate for the software industry, working in 80 countries to expand software markets and create conditions for innovation and growth. Governments and industry partners look to BSA for thoughtful approaches to key policy and legal issues, recognizing that software plays a critical role in driving economic and social progress in all nations. BSA’s member companies invest billions of dollars a year in local economies, good jobs, and next-generation solutions that will help people around the world be more productive, connected, and secure. BSA members include Adobe, Apple, Autodesk, AVEVA, AVG, Bentley Systems, CA Technologies, Cadence, CNC/Mastercam, Compuware, Corel, Dassault Systèmes SolidWorks Corporation, Dell, Intel, Intuit, Kaspersky Lab, McAfee, Microsoft, Minitab, PTC, Progress Software, Quark, Quest Software, Rosetta Stone, Siemens, Sybase, Symantec, and The MathWorks.

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BSA | The Software Alliance ( is the leading advocate for the global software industry before governments and in the international marketplace. Its members are among the world’s most innovative companies, creating software solutions that spark the economy and improve modern life. With headquarters in Washington, DC, and operations in more than 60 countries, BSA pioneers compliance programs that promote legal software use and advocates for public policies that foster technology innovation and drive growth in the digital economy.
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