Music piracy is falling out of favour as streaming services become more widespread, new figures show. One in 10 people in the UK use illegal downloads, down from 18% in 2013, according to YouGov's Music Report.
The trend looks set to continue - with 22 percent of those who get their music illegitimately saying they do not expect to be doing so in five years.
"It is now easier to stream music than to pirate it", said one survey participant.
Another respondent said: "Spotify has everything from new releases to old songs, it filled the vacuum, there was no longer a need for using unverified sources."
This will hack off the music industry which wasted decades blaming piracy and music streaming services for killing off its ancient business model. Now that it has embraced technology the music industry is back in the black after finally realising that attacking the likes of Napster and allofmp3 to Pirate Bay and Megaupload made no difference.
Among those surveyed by YouGov, 36 percent said it was becoming more difficult to find unauthorised sources to verify music.
YouGov noted that some illegal downloading may be the result of streaming exclusives - with 44 percent of respondents saying they only download songs illegally when they can't access them elsewhere.
One of this year's most-pirated albums is Beyonce and Jay-Z's Everything Is Love, which was initially released as an exclusive on Tidal.
Justin Marshall, associate director of YouGov, said: "While illegal downloads still present a significant challenge to the music industry, there appears to be some light at the end of the tunnel.
"Whether or not streaming is what finally banishes illegal downloads remains to be seen, but there are encouraging signs."
YouGov surveyed 4,009 UK adults between 6-13 March this year.
However, its findings may have been skewed by respondents who were reluctant to admit accessing music illegally.
A separate report by piracy-tracking company MUSO, published in March, said there had been 300 billion visits to piracy sites in 2017, up 1.6 percent.
Music piracy rose 14.7 percent, it said, with the UK ranked 10th in the world for accessing illegal sites.