"Freeze! IP Police! Move Your Hand Slowly Away From the Mouse"

By Gary Cutlack on at

The City of London police is setting up a dedicated intellectual property crime unit, which will directly target individual downloaders of copyrighted material.

Business secretary Vince Cable announced the measure, which will be online and ready to analyse the packets of file-sharing suspects some time during 2013. Cable also says the government will run a national ad campaign, warning young people of the, er, dangers of illegal downloads, such as... we'll wait and see what the posters say.

The moves will "encourage and cement success and growth" according to Cable, with a possible £7.9bn being added to the UK economy as part of a wider reworking of all copyright and IP laws.

There's also good news for the UK's inventors, with Cable planning to push through an amendment to our patent laws, meaning an idea should be locked down and enforceable within 90 days. That'll please Sir Dyson, who's been banging on about the unfairness in the global patent system for years. [Guardian]