You’ve spent hours writing, recording, producing and finally releasing your music onto the web, only to discover it’s been hacked and distributed freely through multiple digital outlets.
It can be so frustrating for the artist to see their hard work and effort ripped from them and shared without a care. Sure, most artists are overly happy that their music is being promoted and shared amongst people, but depending on your situation, you may or may not want music piracy to be impacting your work.
The points at which your music could be “hacked” are numerous. However, there are a few safety precautions you can take to avoid unauthorized sources stealing your material. While it’s out of reach to stop internet users ripping your content from trusted platforms such as Spotify, there are a few simple ways you can counteract underground hacking tactics.
How Hackers Operate in the Music Industry
Hackers always have one primary objective, and that’s taking what isn’t rightfully theirs. Whether that’s as simple as your internet activity, or your credit card information, it’s all immoral. In the music industry, hackers are out to not only steal the regular assets such as the above, but they’re also after your music!
What can they do with your music? If they’ve gained access to your computer before you’ve copyrighted anything or distributed it online legitimately, they could use your music in songwriting competitions and claim it as their own.
Most often, artists are seeing their music being distributed for free on odd outdated looking websites such as Metal Music Download, almost instantly after they release it to the general public. Users are adding songs to YouTube, but luckily enough YouTube acts fast on these uploads and shuts them down quickly.
How To Shut Down Music Hackers
Artists and bands most commonly use websites such as SoundCloud and social media outlets to share their music. This is one area where hackers are most likely to attack you. Using an internet security service and Virtual Private Network to protect your accounts, you can prevent them from gaining access to your information.
Secondly, you’ll want to figure out whether you want to attack hackers or simply leave them to it. There’s been an extensive debate in recent years arguing whether music piracy is a good or bad thing. It depends on the artist’s goals and what success they see from their circumstances.
For example, having your music distributed all over the web can only result in more fans right? That may be, but it depends on whether it hurts your chances of successful releases and people being willing to invest in you if they feel they can get your music, films or videos for free.
Personal Action VS Paid Action
If you’ve decided that you don’t want your music being shared on torrent websites or other weird looking outlets, there are two choices on the action you can take, either paid action or personal action.
Paid action entails using a service that operates on your behalf for a fee. The service will issue takedown notices to all existing outlets distributing your music without your consent. This is an easier, less time-consuming option especially if there are hundreds of outlets distributing your music.
The personal option is the same as the above except instead of paying for a service to do the work for you, it’s all hands on deck! You will have to create a legally binding takedown notice which you will email out to anyone and everyone distributing your music without your consent. You will need to approach a legal service such as a lawyer or attorney to help you craft your takedown notice.
As you can imagine that will take some time if your music is being shared freely all over the internet! Also, unless you’re a lawyer, you will need to approach one to create a valid and proper takedown notice.
Your Game Plan
After reading this article, you may be wondering what the right option for you and your music is. While it’s always recommended that you use internet security services regardless of the theme of this post, your music distribution strategy is another matter.
Some careers have been launched via music torrents and piracy. Others have been destroyed by it. Depending on your existing level of success and your overall strategy, you’ll have to work out personally what’s appropriate for your circumstances.
However, if your music is already being distributed online, the unfortunate likelihood is that it’s already being pirated. Assess your current situation and see whether you feel attacking the hackers is a good or bad thing to do.
Have you encountered any of the issues brought up in this post? Help spread awareness by sharing your experiences or any tips you have by leaving a comment below.
Author Bio: Faith is a music lover who has research and worked with the online music world for a long time now. She’s also a freelance writer and enjoys contributing to numerous blogs teaching all things music and internet security.