The release date of Beyonce Knowles debut solo album has been brought forward, amid fears she's to be the latest victim of internet pirates.

DANGEROUSLY IN LOVE - Beyonce's first LP outside American pop trio DESTINY'S CHILD - was due to hit shops on 8 July (03). But her record company COLUMBIA are rushing copies to shops in time for 24 June (03) - in a bid to outwit pirates, who copy leaked music onto the internet.

Columbia president WILL BOTWIN admits the label were "concerned with the threat of the album getting leaked".

But he insists the swift move was also down to huge demand for Knowles' new music.

He adds, "We're really just responding to the market.

"We went with the intention of putting out the album on 8 July... the way radio - and all formats - has jumped all over this thing changed that."

Other artists including Madonna and Radiohead have fallen foul to internet music pirates this year.

15/06/2003 21:27