Magic TV boxes are becoming increasingly popular in Perth with content being streamed from the internet such as Sky Sports and other paid subscription channels.

The devices that operate on Android, which gives owners the ability to watch free premium channels are becoming increasingly popular in Perth.

Authorities have said it is illegal to bypass subscription channels for free by modifying the device. Consumers to be found streaming or downloading premium content that requires a subscription is illegal under the Copyright Law.

It is legal if you watch non paid subscription channels such as Free View.

In 2011, three men were jailed after selling over 400,000 magic TV boxes to the public and were jailed for a total of 15 years.  Authorities have advised consumers to pay for subscriptions and to steer clear of any magic TV boxes that bypass premium channels.

It has emerged the devices can be traced back to the viewers ISP since the encryption on the devices have been turned off when bypassing paid premium channels.

Trading Standards were approached for a comment but are yet to respond.

The Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT) says “When it comes to set-top boxes which stream content, the bottom line is that certain programmes and channels are only available through subscription pay services.

“If a device provides access to that content without a valid subscription from the recognised provider, then anyone using that device needs to be aware that they are accessing that content unlawfully.

“If viewers want to enjoy the pay TV options as offered by subscription providers in the UK, such as Sky, Virgin or BT, then the only way to do that legally is via a valid subscription from those providers.

“Our strong advice to the public is to steer clear of any service other than the recognised provider which appears to be offering access to these channels and programmes at a discounted cost.”

Under the Copyright Act, those convicted of supplying the equipment that bypass premium channels that require a subscription could face a 10-year jail sentence and unlimited fine.

Related story can be found here.

Click here to read five ways to watch premium channels without a contract legally. (Source Which?)