Western Australia has been hit with the most number of software piracy settlements by businesses in 2015.
Software vendor representative body BSA The Software Alliance settled 15 piracy cases in 2015, a third of which were in WA. BSA didn’t name the offending companies, but said the majority were in the manufacturing industry.
CRN reported in January that BSA named Gastech and Offsite as Perth businesses that had settled copyright cases, but with Gastech's lawyer vehemently refuting many details of BSA's depiction of events.
Last year, BSA outed Victoria as having the most cases of software piracy settlements by businesses, accounting for nine of the twelve reported cases in 2014.
Each organisation charged with using pirated software is required to purchase genuine software license and pay a copyright infringement penalty. In one case last year, an unnamed Victorian IT firm was hit with a $72,000 penalty for using illegal software.
While the number of reported cases was up, the estimated value of illegal software fell from $825,000 to $311,500.
BSA senior director for compliance programs Roland Chan said the 2015 results were proof that Australian’s are still willing to take action against software piracy.
“In 2016, BSA will continue to build awareness around the benefits businesses will see off the back of implementing a robust software asset management (SAM) policy and practice,” said Chan.
“This ultimately helps them to maximise returns from their investments in IT, as well as ensure the avoidance of unnecessary legal and security risks that come with the use of unlicensed software.”
BSA The Software Alliance represents large global vendors in illegal software use cases – including Apple, Microsoft, CA, IBM, Oracle and Symantec. The local arm started in 1989 as the Business Software Association of Australia.