Via Torrentfreak (and other sources 😉 ) it seems that ISPs might only be legally allowed to hand over details of filresharers in criminal prosecutions.
Kokott, top legal adviser to the European Unionâ€™s highest Court said that while it is a requirement for ISPâ€™s to divulge personal details in criminal cases, the law does not have the power to force them to disclose the same in a civil case. In Europe, the personal, non-commerical sharing of copyright works is a civil issue.
The statement was issued to help judges come to a decision in the case involving Promusicae – a Spanish music industry organisation – and Telefonica, Spainâ€™s biggest ISP. Promusicae sued Telefonica after they refused to reveal the identities of some of its customers who were accused of swapping copyright music using the file-sharing software, KaZaA. If it had been successful, Promusicae would have used the information to take legal action against those it accuses of sharing music to which it holds the rights.
Begin intensive lobbying from record companies round about … now.
Makes me wonder about suing anon bloggers for defamation?