It has only been a week since the world's largest torrent site, Kickass Torrents (Kat.ph), was taken down by the U.S. government and the site's owner, Artem Vaulin, was arrested in Poland on multiple counts of crimes. It was a huge blow for internet users who used the site to download movies, TV shows, music and games. While dozens of mirrors came to the rescue of hundreds and thousands of stranded users, it now looks like these clone sites are in the line of firing.
The Motion Picture Association (MPA) took down a popular Kickass Torrents mirror, Kat.am. The movie studios raised a complaint with AMNIC, which is the Armenian registry responsible for the .am domain and sent a stern legal threat to the operator of Kat.am.
"This Notice requires you to immediately (within 24 hours) take effective measures to end and prevent further copyright infringement. All opportunities provided by the Website to download, stream or otherwise obtain access to the Entertainment Content should be disabled permanently," MPA wrote in its email to Kat.am operator.
At the time of reporting Kat.am remained offline, but the mirror has launched two new domains – kickass.cd and kickass.mx – which offers the same service as Kat.am. On the site, there is a notice about the suspended state of Kat.am along with a link to a petition titled "Free Artem Vaulin."
TorrentFreak contacted the operator of Kat.am regarding the suspension imposed by the MPA and learnt that they are trying to revive the mirror site.
The MPAA coordinated with the Armenian registry and got the domain deleted. We are making continuous attempts to bring it back, utilizing all the legal channels available," KAT.am's operator told TorrentFreak.
The current status of Kat.ph is still blocked globally and the fate of the site is yet to be determined. However, the KAT community was resurrected and the forum admin guaranteed that the site will return "in one form or another" and "come back stronger than ever."
Users are advised to remain cautious of imposter sites trying to steal users' information in the name of Kickass Torrents. Popular BitTorrent site IsoHunt also launched a mirror site – kickasstorrents.website – to cater to the need of millions of netizens. But Kat.ph or Kat.cr weren't the only BitTorrent sites that offer a library of illicit movie downloads.
Kickass Torrents users are flocking to other popular websites such as The Pirate Bay, EZTV.it, Torrentz, Extra Torrent, RARBG, IsoHunt.to, Lime Torrent, 1337x.to and others.