Music labels want anti-terrorism laws used in their fight against file-sharers.
They want the new powers enshrined in the laws designed to combat terrorists such as those reponsible for the London tube bombings to be used against people illegally sharing the new Darkness single, for example.
The new laws require that ISPs keep data on pages visited by Web surfers for at least a year. The laws - which face continued opposition from privacy advocates - are meant to help the police identify terrorists.
But labels want access to that data - and the UK government: "Has signalled it is sympathetic to the plan to use the powers for tackling Internet piracy," reports The Scotsman.
"The Creative Media Business Alliance (CMBA), which also includes Walt Disney, Universal, and TimeWarner among its members, is lobbying governments, the European Commission and MEPs so that anti-copyright-theft investigators will be able to use the data gathered under anti-terror laws," it reveals.
"The scope of the proposal should be extended to all criminal offences," a letter from the CMBA says.
The lobbying comes as European MPs prepare to vote on December 13 on a set of crucial recommendations that would limit data retention to just one year, as recommended by the EU's own consumer rights panel.
Members of the European Parliament's civil liberties committee made the recommendations last week.
They agreed that the data retention requirements should apply only to cases of serious crime rather than all crimes, as EU governments had wanted.
They made the latter recommendation in response to what they saw as "heavy-handed" lobbying by the labels.