BSA Cracks Downs on Small Business Pirates

November 27th, 2007 - 11:57 pm ICT by admin  

The Business Software Alliance announced another crackdown on software piracy last week. The BSA said that as part of an effort to deter California businesses from using unlicensed software, two California-based companies will pay the software piracy watchdog more than $175,000 to settle claims that they had unlicensed software on their computers.

The companies agreed to delete all unlicensed copies of software, acquire any necessary replacement licenses, and commit to implementing stronger software license management practices.

“Since 2004, California settlement dollars have increased by a total of 32 percent,” Jenny Blank, senior director of legal affairs for the BSA, said in a statement. “We are concerned about these increases and hope to continue to raise awareness about the many risks associated with software piracy in order to deter businesses from using unlicensed software.”

Targeting Small Businesses

The companies in question are two small businesses: Chef Works of San Diego and Roger’s Gardens of Coronoa Del Mar. Chef Works paid $102,000 to settle claims that it had unlicensed copies of Adobe, Microsoft, and Symantec software. Roger’s Gardens paid $73,368 to settle claims that it had unlicensed copies of Adobe, Microsoft, and Symantec software.

Small businesses feeling the wrath of the BSA is common, according to an analysis by Associated Press writer Brian Bergstein. His research shows 90 percent of settlement revenue comes from small businesses. The AP reported that the BSA collected $13 million in settlement proceeds for companies such as Microsoft and Adobe Systems last year alone.

The BSA could not immediately be reached for comment, but Keith Kupferschmid, senior vice president of intellectual property policy and enforcement at the Software Piracy Association (SPA), shed some light on the matter.

“The BSA’s numbers are very different from ours. I can’t say for sure why the BSA goes after small companies. Presumably, it’s a product of…

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