US shutters 82 domain names citing counterfeit goods sales, copyright problems

US government shuts down websites selling everything from sports equipment to music and software

The US has dropped a hammer on 82 domain names saying those of commercial websites engaged in the illegal sale and distribution of counterfeit goods and copyrighted works.

Can US get tough on intellectual property crime?

The websites sold everything from sports equipment, shoes, handbags and sunglasses to copyrighted DVD boxed sets, music and software. One of the biggest closures was, a music meta search site. That shutdown prompted an angry response from the site's owner.

From the Mashable site: Most troubling of all, however, are statements made by the owner of He told the bloggers at TorrentFreak that his site was seized "without any previous complaint or notice from any court... While I was contacting GoDaddy I noticed the DNS had changed. GoDaddy had no idea what was going on and until now they do not understand the situation, and they say it was totally from ICANN."

The move is part of the  Department of Homeland Security's Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Operation In Our Sites v. 2.0 that in  the past saw ICE execute seizure warrants against nine domain names of websites offering pirated copies of first-run movies.

According to ICE, during this operation, federal law enforcement agents made undercover purchases from online retailers suspected of selling counterfeit goods. "In many instances, the goods were shipped directly into the United States from suppliers in other countries using international express mail. If the goods were confirmed as counterfeit or otherwise illegal, seizure orders for the domain names of the websites that sold the goods were obtained from U.S. magistrate judges.  Individuals attempting to access the websites will now find a banner notifying them that the domain name of that website has been seized by federal authorities," ICE stated.

A few of the seized sites include:,,,,,,,, and A complete list can be found here.

"By seizing these domain names, we have disrupted the sale of thousands of counterfeit items, while also cutting off funds to those willing to exploit the ingenuity of others for their own personal gain," said Attorney General Holder in a statement. "Intellectual property crimes are not victimless. The theft of ideas and the sale of counterfeit goods threaten economic opportunities and financial stability, suppress innovation and destroy jobs."

Follow Michael Cooney on Twitter: nwwlayer8  

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