From The Sip Trunking Experts

TMCNet:  Labour urges Met to go ahead with inquiry into Shapps firm

[February 28, 2013]

Labour urges Met to go ahead with inquiry into Shapps firm

(Guardian (UK) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Labour is calling for police to press ahead with an investigation for possible fraud and copyright violations into the family business founded by the Tory chairman Grant Shapps - for selling software that inflates a website's advertising revenue by copying other people's content - after many of its web pages disappeared from the internet.

The opposition had been pressing for the Metropolitan police to launch an investigation into How To Corp, an internet marketing firm set up by Shapps and his wife in 2005, which through its website sells "autoblogging" software that creates an instant cashflow by allegedly plagiarising information.

This week Steve McCabe, a Labour MP, wrote to the lead officer in the specialist crime and operations division dealing with the case to warn that five months after his original complaint: "How to Corp appears to have taken down many of its web pages, thus making it harder for any investigation to be conducted." How To Corp created a product, TrafficPaymaster, that McCabe says seems to be specifically designed to "circumvent the rights of copyright-holders".

The software creates content from other sites - which Labour says means "copying it and using it without permission in the process of running a business".

The company could be prosecuted, suggests McCabe, for "possible offences committed against the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988, as well as conspiracy and obtaining a pecuniary advantage".

The Guardian first revealed that How To Corp's premier product - a $497 (pounds 313) software package, TrafficPaymaster - created web pages by "spinning and scraping" content and sought to attract advertising, in contravention of Google's code of conduct. In response Google said it would blacklist sites created by TrafficPaymaster.

McCabe has also got hold of a TrafficPaymaster user manual and presents this as fresh evidence to be considered by the police.

"If you note the properties on the document, you will see the author is 'Grant'. This may add further weight to the contention that the document was authored by Grant Shapps MP," he said.

The Met said the force is "still assessing an allegation relating to the breach of copyright. There is no investigation at the moment." Going under the name Michael Green, in 2007 Shapps claimed audiences could "make $20,000 in 20 days guaranteed or your money back" - if they spent $200 buying his bespoke software.

A year later, in 2008, Shapps transferred his share of the company to his wife, Belinda.

Michael Green has been replaced by Sebastian Fox as the face of the company. Shapps said TrafficPaymaster was created two years after he left the company, which is now run by his wife.

Captions: Grant Shapps set up an internet marketing firm that Labour thinks could be subject to prosecution under the copyright act (c) 2013 Guardian Newspapers Limited.

[ Back To SIP Trunking Home's Homepage ]

Subscribe here for your FREE
SIP TRUNKING enewslettter.

Featured Partner

Featured Whitepapers

SIP Security for the Enterprise
Voice over IP (VoIP) is incorporated into a variety of computer networks, both public and private, and used for everyday transactions and communications among carriers, businesses, government agencies...

Making A Broadband Purchase Decision
Businesses today have many options for broadband connectivity. Clarifying your particular business needs prior to selecting a broadband provider will ensure an optimal match of broadband service to your requirements.

Voice-Optimized Network Delivers Premier Call Experience
Customers equate call quality with business quality. Real-time communication, interpersonal interaction, and the cordial tone of a call center representative can create a positive impression of your business that no email can match.

Featured Case Studies

Business Telecom Expenses Reduced 50%
A small to medium sized company in the midwest was interested in migrating to IP Communications, but in today's economy, they were hesitant to upgrade their communication system due to their perception that the cost would outweigh the benefits.

Multi-State Company Cuts Telecom Costs 50%
A multi-site, multi-state company with extensive monthly long distance fees and toll-free charges did not have adequate broadband for Broadvox SIP Trunking requirements, nor did they have a SIP enabled telephone system.

Discover Leisure Connects Remote Users to its IP-PBX
Discover Leisure is one of the largest resellers of caravans and motor homes in the UK. With 15 branch of?ces all over the country, the company spent a great deal of money every month just on internal phone calls.

Featured eBOOKS

Internet+: The Way Toward Global Unified Communication
Connecting the telephony of the enterprise PBX or Unified Communications (UC) system using SIP trunks instead of conventional telephone lines has been very successful in recent years.

What is SIP Trunking? Edition 2
SIP trunking is becoming more of a focus for service providers. One key issue many service providers face when deploying SIP trunks is NAT, or Network Address Translation, traversal.

What is SIP Trunking? Edition 1
A vast resource for information about all things SIP - including SIP, security, VoIP, SIP trunking and Unified Communications.

Featured Videos

Broadvox VAR Testimonial VAR 1:
Part 1 of the VAR (Value Added Reseller) Partner Program Testimonials for Broadvox...

E-SBCs AS The Demarcation Point:
Ingate's Steve Johnson talks to Erik Linask about the role session border controller plays as the demarcation point at...

Demystifying DPI
How can deep packet inspection protect your SIP traffic as well as your entire network?

Featured Resources

Partner Program Overview:
Over 4,000 VARs, Master Agents, Solution Providers, and Independent IT Professionals trust Broadvox. We offer customized services and solutions to fit seamlessly into any company's business model. And when you partner with Broadvox, every member of our team stands behind you and your customers 100%...

SIP Trunk UC Summit

What's New

Presenting the New Ingate/Intertex Website:
Internet+ is an extended Internet access allowing high quality SIP (Session Initiation Protocol) based real-time person-to-person communication, everywhere and for any application. It applies to both fixed and mobile networks ...

Featured Blogs

Featured Webinars

Secure SIP Trunking:
What You Need to Know

Successfully Deploying Enterprise SIP Trunking:
Tools and Techniques for Overcoming Common Roadblocks

Featured Podcasts

Getting the Most Out of Your SIP Trunks:
Ingate's Steve Johnson and TMC's Erik Linask discuss how best practices forgetting the most out of SIP Trunking services and common pitfalls to avoid.

Featured Datasheets

Ingate SIParator E-SBCs
Adopting SIP is a simple process with the Ingate SIParator, the secure enterprise session border controller (E-SBC). The SIParator makes secure SIP communications - including VoIP,SIP trunking and more - possible while working seamlessly with your existing network firewall.

Ingate Firewalls
Everyone is talking about enterprise usage of VoIP, instant messaging and other types of realtime communications including presence and conferencing.

SIP Trunk Solutions for Service Providers
The award-winning Ingate Firewall and Ingate SIParator deliver a high quality, reliable SIP trunk connection between the customer's IP-PBX and the service provider network, and solve interoperability issues to simplify deployments and support for remote diagnosis of reported issues.