Saturday February 11, 2017

Google Drive Uses Hash Matching to Detect Pirated Content

Yeah, so? I think the real question here is what cloud service doesn’t use hash matching to flag pirated files. But what is noteworthy is that Google seems to be okay with you stashing stolen content in your account, so long as you don’t share it: "merely storing the file in a private Drive account doesn’t raise any red flags." One of TorrentFreak’s readers admitted that s/he was unable to share a link to a movie screenerآ—hmm, sharing pirated content using a Google service...what could go wrong?

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آ…Fox Entertainment Group’s Elizabeth Valentina pointed out that several prominent piracy platforms use Google as a video host, as we previously highlighted as well. She then added that hash filtering could make a huge difference here. Google’s legal director for copyright Fred Von Lohman did not refute this claim but mentioned that Google drive already uses hash matching to detect infringing material. "I just want to note that, contrary to Ms. Valentina’s statement or suggestion, Google Drive does hash matching. So we do that, another voluntary measure," Von Lohman said at the time. No concrete details were provided, but it’s likely that Google Drive records the hashes of content for which they receive valid takedown requests. These hashes are unique to the file in question, which makes it possible to identify copies accurately. If other Google Drive users then attempt to share a copy of the same file, they are blocked from doing so. However, merely storing the file in a private Drive account doesn’t raise any red flags.