Virgin Media has joined forces with Channel 4 and BSkyB in a bid to help the government tackle internet piracy.

Chief executives from the three companies, along with those from record labels and movie distribution firms, are advising communications minister Lord Stephen Carter and the Digital Britain Report Steering Board on the best methods to tackle the problem of illegal file sharers.

It is hoped the group's advice will help Carter set out a strategy in his Digital Britain report, which is due to be published on June 16.

It is thought the group is pushing for the creation of a regulatory body, which will be overseen by Ofcom, to track down and prosecute illegal file sharers, along with legislation that will force ISPs to punish repeat offenders.

The annoucement comes as the UK Film Council along with the British Phonographic Industry (BPI) and the Federation Against Copyright Theft (FACT) and other creative bodies and trade union groups have presented the government with a set of recomendations on how they think internet piracy should be tackled.