Court rules that Cloudflare must take measures to prevent easy access to pirated sites, but does not need to block them with DNS resolvers

The High Court has ruled that Universal Music was suing Cloudflare for providing services to pirated sites. The Cologne High Court ordered Cloudflare to take measures to prevent access to pirated sites that clearly infringe copyrights, but also ruled that the plaintiffs' request to block sites with public DNS resolvers was excessive. Rejected.

Oberlandesgericht Köln, 6 U 149/22

Court: Cloudflare is Liable for Pirate Site, But Not as a DNS Provider * TorrentFreak

Cloudflare has been sued many times in the past over pirated sites, and Universal Music's German branch also sued Cloudflare, saying ``Cloudflare provides services to the pirated site DDL-Music.''

A district court issued a preliminary injunction ordering Cloudflare to stop providing services to pirated sites. Cloudflare suspended its service to DDL-Music because there was a possibility that it would have to pay a fine of 250,000 euros (about 40.6 million yen) if it did not comply with the order. When accessing DDL-Music, it now returns the error code '451', which is used when content is no longer accessible for legal reasons. However, although he complied with the order, he appealed.

In November 2023, the Cologne High Court handed down its judgment on appeal. The ruling supports the content of the trial court, stating that Cloudflare must take measures against pirated sites.

However, regarding blocking sites using Cloudflare's public DNS resolver ' ,' which Universal Music had requested, 'Cloudflare's DNS does not play a central role in accessing pirated sites. , the block was dismissed as overkill.

The Cologne High Court stated, `` is not necessary to find an IP address from a domain name, nor does it facilitate access. Other DNS resolvers can resolve domain names, and Google's is just one of the common DNS resolvers, and in fact, the most well-known and used. It has been determined that there is no relevance.

News site Torrentfreak says that this ruling is important not only for Cloudflare. As an example, DNS resolver Quad9 is facing a similar lawsuit in Germany.

Please note that DDL-Music has closed its site as of 2021, so there is no longer any point in blocking it.

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