Kodi add-on users have one less place to turn to after a popular repository announced a shock shutdown.
Research has suggested Kodi – which offers access to thousands of channels – is being used in more than five million UK homes.
Kodi software is not illegal, but unaffiliated developers can produce third-party add-ons that provide free access to pirated and illegal content.
These apps allow users to stream premium content, like paid-for sports, movie channels and TV shows for free.
The illegal add-ons are being targeted by ISPs, government agencies, broadcasters and rights holders.
And now one Kodi add-on site has shut down after receiving a warning from copyright holders.
The Kodi add-on repo Team Illuminati has announced it is shutting down after receiving letters from the Alliance for Creativity and Entertainment (ACE).
The ACE is an anti-piracy alliance that includes some of the most powerful studios and content creators around.
Members include Amazon, Sky, HBO, BBC Worldwide, Netflix and Twentieth Century Fox.
And as TorrentFreak reported, the ACE has now claimed the scalp of Team Illuminati this week.
Team Illuminati had described itself as a source for the “very best addons” and “stunning” Kodi builds.
But they have now revealed on Twitter that they will be closing down.
They tweeted: “Sorry guys our entire team got hit with ACE letters today so we’re leaving twitter.
“This group closes tomorrow am thanks for your support all.”
Now when you try to access the repository’s site it displays a message which says: “Thank you to all those who stuck by us during our time here!
“It has been a great ride and honestly such a learning experience!
“Well for the last time from us at Illuminati, goodnight and farewell!”
It’s unclear what the letter said but a “senior counsel” member for the ACE has been contacting numerous members of the Kodi community recently.
According to a post by Kodi Tips, one cease and desist letter said: “We are writing to you concerning your development, distribution, and/or involvement to the operation of certain third party Kodi addons.
“The infringing add-ons provide unlawful access to protected copyrighted works, including works owned by, or exclusively licensed to, the content companies”.
The news comes after earlier this month Kodi users were given another stark warning.
According to a report from security firm ESET, a number of Kodi add-ons may have installed malicious code on thousands of devices.
The malware then allows infected machines to be used for cryptocurrency mining.
The three add-ons include Bubbles, Gaia and XvBMC which have all recently been closed down.
However, if you have ever installed these add-ons you could still be at risk with ESET stating “unwitting victims who have the cryptominer installed on their devices are likely still affected.”
“According to our research, the malware we found in the XvMBC repository was first added to the popular third-party add-on repositories Bubbles and Gaia (a fork of Bubbles), in December 2017 and January 2018, respectively.
“From these two sources, and through update routines of unsuspecting owners of other third-party add-on repositories and ready-made Kodi builds, the malware spread further across the Kodi ecosystem.”