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Reward For Software Piracy Dobbers Quadrupled To $20K

The Business Software Alliance – which pursues Australian businesses using unlicensed software – has quadrupled the potential reward for people who dob in an offending business, driving the maximum up from $5000  to $20,000.

Would-be dobbers will need to disclose accurate information regarding unlawful copying or use of BSA members’ software, it says – and they must be prepared to provide assistance and evidence to support the information, as may be required by the BSA’s legal advisers.

BSA says it’s being driven – at least partly – by a recent IDC report that found the higher the unlicensed software rate in a country, the more malware is encountered on PCs in that country.

“The implication for governments, enterprises and end users is clear: eliminating unlicensed software on their networks could help reduce the risk of cybersecurity incidents,” said Roland Chan, BSA Asia-Pac senior director.

“BSA will continue to raise awareness around the benefits businesses will see through introducing a robust SAM [software asset management] practice, ultimately helping business to avoid financial, legal and security risks,” said Chan.

“With cybercrime rising in Australia, it’s now more crucial than ever for organisations to introduce a formal policy on licensed software use to create the best possible security to protect them from infringement and cyber-theft.”

Natch, BSA is also driven by its member company’s desire to maximise software revenue. In 2015, the alliance settled 16 software piracy cases – one third of them occurring in Western Australia.

Estimated value of the illegal software was put at $311,500, down from more than $820,000 in 2014.

Global companies that back the BSA include Apple, Microsoft, CA, IBM, Oracle and Symantec. The local arm started in 1989 as the Business Software Association of Australia.

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