Software makers seek stricter penalties for pirates

Piracy cost the software industry $59 billion globally last year, with the UK contributing £1.2bn of the “losses”, the Business Software Alliance has claimed.

Software makers seek stricter penalties for pirates

The alliance used those statistics to call for tighter controls on copyright – and in particular it said the Government should increase the damages it can claim for intellectual property theft.

“The current damages law isn’t tough enough to deter those that still think it’s acceptable to use unlicenced software,” said Sarah Coombes, regional senior director of legal affairs for the BSA.

“Legislation that strengthened the availability of court awarded damages would act as a deterenent.”

The comments came following research that the BSA said showed 27% of software on UK computers was unlicenced.

The figures were based on research carried out by IDC, which calculated the commercial value, which is the retail value of unlicensed software installed in a given year, as if it had been sold in the market.

The model has been criticised by academics because it doesn’t take into account how many pirates would have installed the software if they had to pay full price.

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