Info-tech

Software piracy rate falls to 60%, but costs industry $2.9 bn

PTI New Delhi | Updated on June 24, 2014 Published on June 24, 2014

Even as number of data breaches and cyberattacks rises, piracy level in India still remains at 60 per cent with a whopping $2.9 billion worth of unlicenced software being installed in 2013, a non—profit organisation BSA today said.

According to BSA, India second only to China (over $8.7 billion) in the Asia Pacific region in terms of commercial value of unlicenced sofware sold in 2013.

China reported piracy level of 74 per cent in 2013, lower than 77 per cent that was registered in 2011.

India also saw a decline in piracy level to 60 per cent in 2013 from 63 per cent in 2011.

Globally, 43 per cent of software installations were unlicensed at a commercial value of $62.7 billion.

While the piracy level has gone up marginally (from 42 per cent in 2011), the commercial value has declined slightly from $63.5 billion in 2011.

The Asia Pacific region reported the highest level of installation of unlicenced software at 62 per cent (worth $21 billion).

“Computer users cited risk of security threats from malware as the top reason not to use unlicensed software.

Among their specific concerns are intrusions by hackers and loss of data,” BSA Senior Director Compliance Programs Asia Pacific Roland Chan said on a concall.

Yet a striking 60 per cent of the software installed on personal computers in India in 2013 was not properly licensed, he added.

Only 33 per cent of companies (respondents) in India have written policies in place requiring use of properly licensed software, he said.

“While rates in most countries are declining slowly, the global average still rising because the PC market is growing fastest in emerging markets where the rates of unlicensed software use are highest,” IDC VP Asia Pacific Consulting Operations Victor Lim said.

Chan said unlicensed software use is an organisational governance issue and the study shows there is a clear need for improvement.

“There are basic steps any company can take to ensure it is fully compliant, like establishing a formal policy on licensed software use and maintaining careful records.”

Companies also should consider implementing more robust software asset management (SAM) programs as these help in avoiding security and operational risks and ensure companies have the right number of licenses for their users, she added.

Published on June 24, 2014
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