TV networks are losing at least $45 million a year due to online piracy of popular TV programs.
A new report by the Australian Institute of Criminology has found Australians to be the most prolific downloaders of TV series on the Internet.
The availability of downloading a TV episode hours after it has aired overseas has forced Australian TV networks to fast-track the airing of popular shows, like Californication and The Mentalist.
While the report, titled Intellectual Property Crime And Enforcement In Australia, says the industry is currently losing $45 million a year to piracy, the total cost could rise to almost $200 million once tax losses and advertising revenue is considered.
According to the report, more than one in five Australians have watched or bought a pirated film or TV show.