File-sharers who trade software are being hit with immediate legal action in the UK.
Ten ISPs (Internet Service Providers) have been ordered to hand over the details of 150 users accused of illegally sharing software. ISPs include BT, NTL, Telewest and Tiscali.
The Federation Against Software Theft (FAST) has obtained the High Court order after a 12-month covert investigation of software file-sharers. They are accused of uploading software and sharing it online.
The names and addresses of their suspects will be provided to the organisation in the next two weeks, according to the BBC.
FAST will take its cases to the police and the Crown Prosecution Service once it has personal details about its suspects.
"We plan to make an example of perpetrators," FAST said.
Maximum penalties include two years in jail and/or an unlimited fine. Further actions are expected.
Last Friday, the UK courts ordered two men to pay the British Phonographic Industry (BPI) between £1,500 and £5,000 for making songs available online. Legal costs are expected to cripple both men. The BPI has a slew of such actions outstanding as it uses uts legal muscle to end what it claims is the "scourge" of file-sharing.
Current number one act the Arctic Monkeys came to prominence and generated a major fan base by allowing fans to make the band's music available online for free. The act were eventually signed by independent UK label, Matador Records.