Virgin Media is to trial a software tool to measure copyright infringement on the internet when it launches its planned music download subscription service.
The CView tool from business and technology consultancy Detica is aimed at helping internet service providers (ISPs) and creative industries understand the level of digital piracy in the UK.
CView will enable ISPs to apply advanced analytics to high-volume anonymous data traffic to measure the proportion of unauthorised file sharing without identifying or storing user data.
According to Detica, the tool has the potential to measure illegal file-sharing across all UK ISP networks to enable industry and government collaboration to respond to the digital piracy challenge outlined in the Digital Britain report.
Andy Frost, director of media at Detica, said the Digital Britain report sets bold targets to reduce illegal file sharing on ISP networks, but until now measuring the extent of the problem has been based on conflicting consumer surveys and speculation.
"We hope the launch of Detica CView will pave the way for stronger collaboration between ISPs and the media industry by enabling all parties to more accurately measure the success of shared initiatives, reduce digital piracy and provide an unparalleled level of accuracy," he said.
Understanding how consumer behaviour is changing will be an important requirement of Virgin Media's upcoming music offering, said Jon James, executive director of broadband at Virgin Media.
"Should they become law, the government's legislative proposals will also require measurement of the level of copyright infringement on ISPs' networks," he said.