Netflix’s “House of Cards” launched its third season on the streaming service on Friday, and that quickly led to a surge in piracy downloads around the world.
Piracy-tracking firm Excipio reports that the episodes, within the first 24 hours, had around 681,889 unique downloaders worldwide. In comparison, last year’s second season had 320,927 downloaders in the same period.
The top ten territories for piracy were China (60,538), followed by the U.S. (50,008), India (47,106), Australia (40,557), Poland (37,552), the U.K. (32,703), Canada (27,584), France (27,151), Greece (20,551) and the Netherlands (20,402).
Only half of those countries have Netflix service, though the company is engaged in an aggressive rollout across the globe throughout the next two years with the aim to be in 200 countries by 2017.
The piracy figures do NOT include the millions who use virtual private network services to access the U.S. branch of the streaming service.