A campaign by the Japanese music industry, The Recording Industry Association of Japan, has led to a change in piracy laws, meaning those found guilty of copyright-infringing illegal downloads may be given up to a two-year prison sentence or the equivalent of £15,900 fine (two million yen).
The law defining illegal downloads was passed in 2010 but now those found of offenses will be firmly prosecuted.
In the territory, the charge for uploads of copyright-infringing material could result in up to a ten-year prison sentence and ten million yen fine, around £80,000.
In research published by the The Recording Industry Association of Japan in 2010, it was reported that in that year 4.36 billion pirated music and video files were illegally downloaded compared to 440 million legitimately-purchased files.
The organisation’s chairman and also chief executive of Sony Music Entertainment Japan, Naoki Kitagawa, said of the recent law enforcement: "This revision will reduce the spread of copyright infringement activities on the internet.”
Source: BBC News