Online Piracy in Numbers - Facts and Statistics [Infographic]

Created: May 01, 2021

Updated: June 19, 2024

Online piracy has been growing throughout the world for years now. Nearly a quarter of the global Internet bandwidth is used for online piracy. Often considered a victimless crime by the 'pirates', online piracy results in billions of dollars in lost revenue. Besides artists, creators, publishers, and distributors, it hurts the entire media industry. Every year 230,000 to 560,000 jobs are lost in the United States due to online video piracy.

Despite efforts to curtail piracy, it has penetrated every digital media format from television and movies to music, software, video games, and even books. More than 141 billion visits were made to piracy websites in 2023-2024. The United States, Russia, and China contribute the highest number of visits to piracy websites.

Videos (films and TV shows) are the most pirated content on the internet making up more than 66% of all pirated content. According to estimates, the United States loses $29.2 billion in revenue every year due to online video piracy. The latest piracy reports indicate that global film piracy increased by 33% during the COVID-19 lockdown.

Check out the latest online piracy facts and statistics as well as examples of the most pirated content in the infographic below.

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Online Piracy facts :

Pirated video material gets over 230 billion views a year.

More than 80% of global online piracy can be attributed to illegal streaming services.

Digital video piracy is costing the US economy between $29.2 and $71 billion each year.

126.7 billion viewings worth of US-produced TV episodes are pirated every year.

70,000 jobs a year are lost in the United States due to music piracy.

Annual global revenue losses from digital piracy are between $40 and $97.1 billion in the movie industry.

Illegal downloading of copyrighted materials takes up 24% of the global bandwidth.

52% of online users watch pirated videos.

59% people are aware that downloading or streaming pirated videos is illegal.

67% of online piracy sites are hosted in North America and Western Europe

Nearly 24% of the global Internet bandwidth is used for online piracy.

98.8% of data transferred using P2P networks is copyrighted

28 million users download and share files through P2P networks every day.

91.5% of filed available for download on Cyberlockers sites (Rapidshare, Megaupload,etc) are copyrighted

Only 1 out of 10,000 pcs of the most popular content on the OpenBitTorrent tracker is non-copyrighted

Worldwide Visits to Piracy Sites in 2024:
- 141  billion visits to piracy websites by 2024
- 386 million visits per day
- 248,287 visits per minute

Breakdown of Visits to Piracy Sites:

Streaming sites: 57%
Direct download portals: 27%
Torrent sites: 12%
Stream rippers: 4%

$9.8 billion in revenue losses in 2018 due to piracy in the music industry.

$29.2 billion revenue losses in the US every year due to online video piracy.

$51.6 billion in economic losses due to online TV & movie piracy.

$300 million in lost publisher income each year due to e-book piracy.

230,000 to 560,000 jobs lost in the United States every year due to online video piracy.

37% of software running in the world are unlicensed.

$46.3 billion of software running in the world are unlicensed.

2 out of every 5 copies of software running in the world are unpaid.

20% of pirated software are running in North America.

Illegal streaming constitutes 80% of online video piracy.

24% of users download music from illegal sources.

26% of online users download a film or a TV series from illegal sources.

13% of users download an e-book or an audiobook from illegal sources.

21% of users download games from illegal sources.

Global Piracy Statistics: A Staggering Number of Visits

The sheer volume of online piracy is staggering. Estimates suggest there are over 130 billion visits to piracy websites annually . This activity isn't evenly distributed. North America, Europe, and Asia contribute the highest number of visits, highlighting the global nature of the issue.

Content Consumption Habits: What Gets Pirated the Most?

Movies and TV shows reign supreme in the piracy world, accounting for over two-thirds of all pirated content . Music downloads, though seemingly declining with the rise of streaming, remain a significant concern. Software, ebooks, and video games also contribute to the piracy landscape.

Who are the Online Pirates? Understanding Demographics

Younger demographics, particularly Gen Z and Millennials, are more likely to engage in online piracy . This can be attributed to factors like limited disposable income and a desire for the latest content. Additionally, piracy rates tend to be higher in regions with limited access to legal content, showcasing the digital divide's role in this issue.

Piracy by Region %age
Europe 45.72%
Asia 16.52%
North America 13.48%
South America 12.27%
Africa 6.97%
Oceania 1.88%
Other 3.16%

Top 10 Countries for Online Piracy 

Top 10 Countries for Online Piracy 
Countries Visits to Piracy Sites
US 12.5 billion
Russia 8.3 billion
China 6.9 billion
India 5.6 billion
Brazil 5.4 billion
Ukraine 4.3 billion
France 4.3 billion
Turkey 3.9 billion
Vietnam 3.6 billion
UK 3.4 billion

Most Pirated Items on the Web:

TV shows: 49.4%
Movies: 17.1%
Music: 16.0%
Publishing (books): 11.2%
Software: 6.2%

Top 10 Most Pirated Movies

Title Downloads 
Avengers: Infinity War 5.29 million
Captain Marvel  4.09 million
Aquaman 3.85 million
Shazam! 3.66 million
Ant-Man and the Wasp 3.49 million
Deadpool 2 3.49 million
Thor: Ragnarok 3.39 million
Justice League 3.26 million
Venom 2.99 million
Spider-Man: Homecoming 2.98 million

Top 10 Most Pirated TV Shows of 2020

The Mandalorian Vikings
The Boys Star Trek: Picard
Westworld Rick and Morty
The Outsider The Walking Dead
The Flash Arrow

Top 10 Most Pirated Games on the Web

Game Pirated Copies
Pokémon Diamond and Pearl 5.4 million
Dissidia Final Fantasy 5.4 million
Phantasy Star Portable 2 4. 67 million
Call of Duty: Black Ops 4.2 million
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 4.1 million
Battlefield: Bad Company 2 3.98 million
Mafia 2 3.5 million
Mass Effect 2 3.24 million
Sims 3 3.2 million
Starcraft 2 3.12 million

Most Pirated E-books on the Web

Survival Hacks Preppers Gear Shelter Knots Fire And Traps Guide
Mental Math Magic
Mediterranean Diet Cookbook
Learn C# in 72 Hours for Beginners
The Ultimate Bodybuilding Book
Tartine: A Classic Revisited
Peloton Hacks: Getting the Most From Your Bike
The Smoothie Cleanse: Recipes for Weight Loss
The Urban Sketching Handbook 101 Sketching Tips
Bіtсоіn Standard: Beginners Guide

Top 10 Most Pirated Windows Software

Windows OS (XP, 7, 10)
Microsoft Office
Internet Download Manager
Nero Burning ROM
All Antivirus (Avast, ESET, McAfee, Norton, Kaspersky, Bitdefender, etc.)
Adobe Photoshop (and other Adobe software)
FL Studio
Vegas Pro

Top 10 Most Pirated Music Artists

Music Artist  Illegal Downloads
Ed Sheeran 7.46 million
Luis Fonsi 6.29 million
Ricky Martin 4.29 million
Charlie Puth 4.07 million
Bruno Mars 3.61 million
Taylor Swift 2.39 million
Arcade Fire 1.93 million
Shakira 1.85-million 1.85 million
Neil Young 1.66 million
Justin Timberlake 1.64 million

Global film piracy increased by 33% during COVID-19 lockdown.

Online piracy soared during the pandemic.

Country Increase in Film Piracy Increase in TV Piracy
Italy 66% 41%
India 63% 24%
Spain 50% 18%
Portugal 47% 28%
Canada 45% 12%
Germany 36% 12%
UK 43% 30%
US 41% 12%
France 41% 13%

Source Links -

Piracy Is Back: Piracy Statistics for 2024

130 Billion Pirate Site Visits in 2020: It’s Marketing Treasure

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