The Business Software Alliance (BSA), an international association representing the global software industry, in partnership with market research firm IDC, announced its seventh annual global software piracy study, tracking PC software piracy rates in more than 100 economies.
From 2008 to 2009, installations of unlicensed software on personal computers (PC) in Hungary fell by 1% to 41%. The commercial value of this illegal software amounted to $ 113 million.
Despite the global economic recession, piracy of software on PCs declined in many markets, dropping in 54 economies and increasing in only 19, according to the 2009 BSA/IDC Global PC Software Piracy Study. However, the global piracy rate increased from 41% to 43%, largely the result of fast growing, higher piracy markets such as China, India, and Brazil increasing their share of the overall software market.
“The 1% decrease in software piracy in Hungary looks promising, however we should not forget that efforts to push piracy back are still of vital importance. A piracy rate of 41% means that still 4 out of 10 new PC software are illegal which is far from acceptable,” said Gergely Dzsinich, BSA Hungarian committee chair. “As we emerge from the most severe global economic recession in twenty years, we will continue to engage with government, businesses, and consumers about the risks of unauthorized reproduction, distribution and use of software – and the true impact that software piracy has on Hungary’s economy.”
IDC finds that for every $100 worth of legitimate software sold in 2009, an additional $75 was pirated. But this is an issue that affects more than industry revenues, as lowering PC software piracy can have significant economic benefits. A 2008 BSA/IDC study on the economic impact of reducing software piracy found that in Hungary alone lowering the software piracy rate by ten points over four years could create 1100 new workplaces, increase economic performance by $274 million and add $63 million in tax revenues. In fact, IDC estimates that for every dollar of legitimate software sold in a country, there are another $3-$4 of revenue for local service and distribution firms. Piracy also puts consumers at risk by compromising their computer security, since pirated software often contains malware.
“The fight against software piracy remains an urgent one. This fight can only be done with the cooperation of all parties involved” – commented Dr. Dzsinich. The professional support, information and education programs of BSA assist the Police, the customs and finance guard, the tax authorities, the representatives of the judges and the attorney professions to keep pace with the imminent issues of licensing, a key element in the legal aspect of software. As a result of the concentrated efforts of the authorities the members of the “warezking” gang, charged with crimes against copyright holders with a value exceeding HUF 2 billion, are now in jail. BSA, together with other industry associations, is an active member of the anti-counterfeiting national body HENT.
At the same time, BSA continues to run NagyVizit, a set of prearranged company visits on a nationwide basis. This short list in itself shows that BSA focuses on two directions: first, to make all company managers realize the size of the risks they would take if their company uses stolen software. Second, to provide all possible support to the authorities, the government institutions and the criminal investigation authorities to ensure the highest possible professional standards,” said Dzsinich.
“The BSA/IDC Global Piracy Study shows there was some progress in the global fight against software piracy in 2009 – but incremental change is not enough,” said Robert Holleyman, BSA president and CEO. “Piracy is limiting IT innovation, job creation, local economic growth and is robbing governments of vital tax revenues. Our report makes it very clear that governments around the world must redouble their efforts to combat software theft.” (press release)