Does Cloudflare respond to DMCA? Yes, but only if the content is stored on the platform permanently. If you own intellectual property, you may send a DMCA takedown notice to Cloudflare or anyone who uses your work without permission. If you receive a DMCA takedown notice, you may file a counter-notice.
Quick take: DMCA Takedown on Cloudflare
- You may send a DMCA takedown notice to Cloudflare or the infringing party.
- If you find your intellectual property on a pirate website, you may report the website to the FBI.
- If you send a DMCA notice to Cloudflare, Cloudflare will send you the infringing party’s information, including, webhost, name, and contact.
- You may send a DMCA take down notice to the infringing party’s webhost or online service provider.
- Fair dealing/ fair use exceptions allow content creators to use copyrighted work without consent.
Is Cloudflare liable for illegal content?
No. Under 17 US CODE 512 “DMCA safe harbor provision”, service providers are not liable for monetary relief if, quote:
“A service provider shall not be liable for monetary relief, or, except as provided in subsection (j), for injunctive or other equitable relief, for infringement of copyright by reason of the provider’s transmitting, routing, or providing connections for, material through a system or network controlled or operated by or for the service provider, or by reason of the intermediate and transient storage of that material in the course of such transmitting, routing, or providing connections.”
That protection works under the condition that:
- The transmission of the infringing material, is initiated by the user.
- The service provider provides storage without selecting the content.
- Service providers do not select recipients.
- The content is transmitted through a network or system without modification.
In other words, Cloudflare is not responsible for user-generated content, explaining why there are numerous torrent sites in Cloudflare.
What happens when you file a DMCA takedown notice on Cloudflare?
If you notice someone using your intellectual property on Cloudflare without authorization, what you must do is get a DMCA subpoena. A DMCA subpoena will force Cloudflare to share the information they have on the user. Why?
According to Cloudflare, the platform does not host web content. Consequently, they cannot remove website content. They can only send you the infringing party’s information.
What is a valid DMCA takedown notice on Cloudflare?
Cloudflare will only send you the infringing person’s information if your takedown notice is valid. Under the DMCA act, a valid takedown notice must contain the following elements:
- Your physical or digital signature (your full name is valid).
- The notice must identify the infringing material, location, and infringing activity (send links to the original content and infringing content).
- Your contact information, including email address, telephone number, and address.
- A statement under the penalty of perjury that you reasonably believe that the use of the disputed material -was not authorized by the copyright owner.
- A statement that the information you provided is accurate and authorized by the copyright owner.
When you send a DMCA takedown notice, you initiate a legal process. Consequently, if the notice is fraudulent, the person receiving it may take civil action.
How do I get rid of a Cloudflare website?
As mentioned, after sending a DMCA subpoena to Cloudflare, Cloudflare will send you the information they have on the infringing party, including the website host. You have two options here:
(1) You may send a DMCA takedown notice to the website’s host.
(2) Send the notice directly to the infringing party.
For example, if the website is on Google’s web hosting service, you may send the notice to Google. We have a detailed guide on how to take down content in Google. Follow the link.
What information will I get from Cloudflare?
Cloudflare will send you basic user data, including phone numbers, payment service, physical address, Ip address, and login times.
Is there an alternative to DMCA Takedown?
You may take civil action. But the process can be tedious and expensive, especially if you are dealing with an illegal torrenting site. So instead of taking legal action or sending a DMCA takedown, you may send a demand letter. A demand letter is a legal document that tells the person receiving it that you are aware of the infringing activity and may be willing to settle out of court. In other words, you use it to demand compensation for unauthorized use of your work. We recommend sending one through a lawyer.
What to do if you receive a DMCA Takedown notice on Cloudflare
If you do not own the content, it is good practice to remove it. On the other hand, if you own the content or think the notice is fraudulent, you may fill out Cloudflare’s abuse form at https://www.cloudflare.com/abuse/form.
Once you complete the form, Cloudflare will contact you and guide you on the rest.
What if the person sends the notice directly to you or your Webhost?
If the takedown notice is sent to your Webhost, company policy will determine what happens next. What may happen is your host may take down your content or disable your website.
What you need to remember is. The DMCA Act requires service providers in the US to provide users with information and services related to copyright infringement. Which means they must give you the option to file a DMCA counter-notice. As the name suggests, a DMCA counter-notice is a legal response to a DMCA takedown notice, meaning you use it to dispute a takedown notice.
Once you complete a counter-notice, the person sending the takedown notice has 14 days to take civil action. If the person does not take civil action, your Webhost or online service provider may restore the content if it does not violate platform policy.
How do you take down a pirate website on Cloudflare?
Report the website to the FBI. WHY?
An initiative launched by the FBI in collaboration with the National Property Rights Coordination Centre aims to combat piracy, cyber-attacks, theft, fraud, and copyright infringement issue on platforms such as Cloudflare.
Where should you report infringing activity?
According to the Justice Department, you may report trademark counterfeiting and copyright piracy to:
- Local FBI office
- US immigration and customs enforcement
- Internet crime center.
Can you go to jail for copyright infringement on Cloudflare?
Yes. Under US code section 2319, the penalty for pirating copyrighted material is up to five years in prison and a maximum fine of $250000. Note that each violation may constitute a separate offense.