Eircom, Ireland’s largest Internet service provider (ISP), has reportedly agreed to implement a graduated "three strikes" program against illegal peer-to-peer (P2P) downloaders. This development arose out of a settlement of an action brought by four major record companies. The record companies had sued Eircom, asking the court to compel the ISP to take steps to prevent its networks from being used by subscribers to illegally download music. According to the music companies, music piracy in Ireland costs them up to €14 million a year.
Under the arrangement, the record companies will provide Eircom with IP addresses of people whom they detect are illegally sharing copyright works on a P2P basis. Eircom will then send out two warnings to the subscriber, informing the subscriber that their IP address has been detected infringing copyright and warning the subscriber that they will be disconnected if they fail to comply. If the subscriber continues to ignore the warnings, Eircom will disconnect the subscriber.
The parties also agreed to work closely together on a joint approach to curb P2P copyright infringement. In addition, the record companies agreed to seek similar agreements with other ISPs.