Is Torrenting illegal or Legal? Let’s Find Out

Is Torrenting illegal or Legal? Let’s Find Out

Torrenting is actually a widespread technique of downloading files like movies, songs, games, and may other through a torrent client.

This technique is extensively used by torrents all over the world for the basic purpose of downloading the file from a single server which is later transferred by several users who already have that particular file in their computer.

What is torrenting?

Torrenting is a type of peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing skill where numerous users can connect and share their specific and required files instead of being dependent on a single website or a source for the purpose of downloading files.

Torrenting is very useful in a way that the users not only download files from a single website/ source but also from other users of the same torrent enabling a flowing transfer among the users.

Torrenting also reduces the network is also reduced because in the process of torrenting each peer/ user acts as a mini-server and considerably reduces the load.

How to use it?

A wrong interpretation about torrenting is that many people think it as a normal downloading process, however, in reality, things are a lot different. People prefer torrenting because it is quite easy to search a file according to the choice of the user. A user can search it on the internet and download it by using a torrent.

Torrenting can be done in a way that a file is fragmented into small chunks of data. However, the user/peer has a different fragment of the file. The user downloads it and shares it with other peers who don’t have it and download all the data chunks from those peers. When the users have downloaded them all so, they put them all together and at last a complete file is formed.

In other words, to use a torrent a user must follow these steps:

  • Download a torrent client.
  • Search for a torrent to download.
  • Download the torrent file.
  • Add the torrent file to the client.

Is Torrenting legal or Illegal?

This a very confusing debate that either torrenting is legal or illegal but, it is essential to know that torrenting is just a simple way of sharing files among the users/peers and in this act torrenting is not an illegal thing.

The legal and illegal aspect of torrenting depends on the file which is being downloaded. If the shared file is not restricted or copyrighted, then torrenting is a legal thing but if the downloaded file is illegal or unofficial then such files might have its own consequences.

Since every country has its own legal structure with regard to the implementation of copyright rules and regulations. It may be possible that if in one country torrenting is considered illegal and in another country, it might be legal. This all depends on the privacy laws and use of the internet. If you live in a country where torrenting is illegal, then it is necessary that you have to download torrent secretly and you must remain anonymous.

There is nothing illegal about using the torrent client software, however, sharing plagiarized and copyrighted content using that software is strictly prohibited and illegal in many countries.

Is Torrenting Safe?

Although torrenting is not illegal it is a bit risky. If a user/peer torrent any copyrighted material so, there is a greater chance of being caught by higher authorities. Moreover, there is also a chance of downloading infected files hence, it is recommended to use a VPN for making torrenting safer.

Governments and service provider’s work together to make the life of the users more and more difficult who torrent media files and pirate software.

Risks of Torrenting?

There are not many risks associated with the process of torrenting. The downloading is done from a network of peers so, the risk of computer virus tying a ride are slightly lesser than with normal downloading.

Another concern associated with torrenting is malware. The user/peer wouldn’t have any idea that the downloaded torrent file from a source might contain the virus. The downloaded virus-affected torrent files can become a reason to cripple down the user’s computer system.

With the process of torrenting, there is a risk of illegal and unlawful access to corporations serious and significant business information. This sensitive data may include workers records, corporation’s policies, and information about stakeholders, rewards, and many more. If a worker downloads a torrents file and unknowingly save that torrent file in the same folder which contains the critical information and that folder can only be accessed by the higher authorities of the corporations, and if they notice a torrent file so, they will certainly take an action against that person.

Torrenting doesn’t directly affect the user’s system. However, there is always a possibility of online hack attacks and illegal access to a user’s information. As soon as a user either uploads, downloads, or shares a torrent file so, the online hackers become active and manage to collect data about online user’s activities. The hackers after acquiring user’s data use it for their own personal use and advantage.

Another biggest concern of using torrents is that most of the files are known to have files which have copyrighted material. Here torrent users face legal issues when they download these torrents.

The torrent users are under the strong supervision of surveillance agencies. The service providers observe the users online activities. If ever they found hints of the illegally downloaded torrent file or any copyrighted torrent file then the torrent users tend to face legal penalties for their actions.

Torrenting Rules and Regulations in Different Countries:

Different countries have different rules and regulations for torrenting. Torrenting may be legal in one country but it is possible that it might not be permitted in other countries.

The following list shows different countries having different torrenting status:

Countries where downloaded copyrighted content is permitted for personal use Countries where downloaded copyrighted content is overlooked Countries where downloaded copyrighted content is fined Countries that have shut down torrenting sites
Poland Argentina Finland Australia
Spain Brazil France China
Switzerland Canada Germany Italy
Columbia Japan Latvia
Czech Republic UAE Malaysia
Denmark UK Portugal
Egypt Russia
Greece South Africa
India USA
Iran
Israel
Mexico
Netherlands
Philippines
Romania
Slovakia
Singapore
Uruguay

 

Penalties If You Caught With Torrenting:

In the USA, the act of illegal downloading falls under the Copyright Act of 1976. Since in the US the torrenting sites are completely shut down so, if someone is caught up with torrenting then the general penalty is a monetary fine. The damage an accused may be indebted can range from $750 to $30,000.

This is an exactly fixed penalty amount. It may also depend upon the facts of the case and will later be decided by the legal courts too. For example, according to CNN, a 32-year-old woman who belongs from Minnesota was found accountable for downloading 24 songs and was charged with $80,000 per song which means a total of $1.9 million.

According to a report published earlier this year, more than 1,000 lawsuits were filed against the use of BitTorrent in the US last year. Similarly, in the UK illegal downloading falls under the civil law while copyright violation or stealing someone else work and publish it on the internet has a sentence of a maximum of two years.

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