Western Europe Home of Most Active Pirates

Western Europe is home to some of the world's most active countries engaged in online game piracy, according to Entertainment Software Association.

"Piracy is the single greatest threat to the innovation, artistic commitment and technological advancements enjoyed by millions of consumers worldwide," said Michael D. Gallagher, CEO of the ESA, which represents U.S. computer and video game publishers. "Piracy is a job killer that the world economy cannot afford in these difficult economic times. Countries that skirt obligations to combat piracy need to understand the unacceptable damage they are facilitating -and those countries that invest in protecting intellectual property rights and ensure that piracy is not tolerated at any level should be lauded."

The heaviest downloading countries per capita were Isreal, Spain, Italy, Portugal and Poland, with Italy having the highest download activity across the board.

The report also points to P2P networks, BitTorrent and eDonkey, saying both had "alarmingly high volumes" of illegal game downloads.

Following 13 titles in December, 2008 alone showed that users downloaded the games 6,429,279 times.

IIPA