What is Software Piracy?
Software piracy has become an important topic affecting the software industry internationally, including individual and business users of all software products worldwide.
Software piracy is the failure to comply with software license agreements. Piracy, in any form, is an unlawful action and offenders are liable to either civil or criminal prosecution. It is important that all software users and resellers understand the different forms of software piracy in order to comply with the law and protect themselves and their business.
The various forms of software piracy are:
- End User Copying - A licensed software user passes their software onto friends, business colleagues and family to copy indiscriminately. Or in the case of volume software licenses, users and/or businesses under report the number of computers in which the software is installed.
- Reseller Copying - Resellers pass their software onto their clients.
- Counterfeiting - Criminals copy the software and collateral, such as manuals, and sell it as the original product.
Software piracy negatively impacts customers, resellers and software vendors. Lower vendor revenues, as a result of software piracy, limit the industry's ability to re-invest funds in research and development (R&D) and continuously maintain and improve service and support infrastructures. Ongoing investment in R&D ensures that software vendors have the ability to keep their users at the forefront of the latest technology developments.
Furthermore, purchasing pirate software can have a damaging effect on your company as the software may introduce viruses to your system, destroying mission critical data. Users of pirate products do not benefit from the quality and reliability guarantees provided to lawful, licensed customers and will be unable to access technical software support.
The Sage Pastel Piracy Department was to assist pirate users to legalise their software; uncover piracy within the reseller channel; identify end user pirate sites and take legal action against piracy offenders of Sage Pastel products.
You can assist the Piracy Department to investigate and uncover pirate users, by reporting suspected software pirates online. Sage Pastel treats all piracy reports with complete confidentiality.
Sage Pastel's anti-piracy policy includes an amnesty provision for those customers who are currently running pirate copies of any Sage Pastel software products. Amnesty is provided on the following conditions:
- The pirate user reports the piracy directly to Sage Pastel, prior to a third party reporting the piracy.
- Legalisation of the software takes place within 10 days of the report.
- Details are supplied as to how the pirate software was obtained.
The Business Software Alliance (BSA) is a worldwide organisation providing education and assistance to end users and resellers on software piracy and the legalisation of pirated software. The BSA also assists its members - leading business software vendors located worldwide - to investigate and prosecute piracy of their individual software packages. Sage Pastel has been a member of the BSA since 2000.
The BSA's objective is to eliminate software piracy and the unlawful use of software through education and legal enforcement. As a result, the BSA operates 65 hotlines around the world, providing callers with more information about software piracy and assisting them to report suspected incidents of piracy. Since its inception in 1988, the BSA has filed hundreds of lawsuits worldwide against suspected copyright infringers.
Contact the BSA
For more information on piracy and ensuring your company is legally compliant, please contact the BSA at the following details: