The Walking Dead / AMC

The show is the second most torrented series in the world, and could be the first to be hit by major new measures

The Walking Dead has returned — but not for people looking to torrent it.

The zombie show is the second most popular TV series for pirates, just after Game of Thrones. But it might quickly fall down those rankings, since copies of the show appear to be getting removed more quickly than ever, according to TorrentFreak.

Many of the most popular torrenting sites don’t have any copies of the new episodes, which started airing last week, at all. Others have only one copy and those that are uploaded are often removed very quickly.

The most popular torrenting site, KickassTorrents (KAT), has barely any torrents at all.

The removals appear to be the result of a renewed effort by the copyright holders to pursue torrenting sites through takedown requests. The requests use powers from the Digital Millennium Copyright Act that allow owners of TV shows to require sites that are making them available to remove them.

While KAT has hardly any copies of the show, other sites are complying with the requests less readily. The Pirate Bay, for instance, still has many of the shows available and is presumably ignoring the requests.

Some have taken to sharing the show under alternative names or using other tricks, to ensure that the automated requests don’t find the shows that they are looking for.