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Effects of Software Piracy

The general concept of software piracy is that it is the act of downloading of commercially licensed software without paying the creator. This is most commonly done through sketchy websites or torrent programs which supply malicious code along with the program. There is, however, another angle of software piracy that most people don’t think about when they are referring to software piracy. Software piracy is also the act of sharing a program with a friend or copying the disk of software on your computer for later use or for installing the program on multiple computers when it is licensed for only one computer by the manufacturer.

In fact, any action taken by the software’s user that is in violation of the software agreement is considered as an act of software piracy by the law. It does not matter if software piracy is conducted by an individual for personal use or by a corporation for commercial use, using programs without a proper license or going against the license agreement can lead to civil or criminal lawsuits against the perpetrators. In this article, we are going to discuss the effects of software piracy in detail.

Security Risks

Pirated programming can be used as a host to carry computer viruses and different sorts of malware that can cause harm to your computer and may lead to data loss or a slow pc. As indicated by the Harrison Group, above twenty-four percent of illegal duplicates of Windows were either infected with malware from the beginning or they naturally downloaded malware when the pirated copy of Windows was connected to the Internet.

Regardless of whether a bit of pirated programming isn’t contaminated itself, it can represent a security hazard through an absence of updates. Pirated copies of software cannot usually download updates that are regularly supplied by the manufacturer. This leads to the user using an older version of the software that contains security loopholes that can be exploited by hackers and other viruses.

Productivity Risks

Beside security loopholes, utilizing obsolete pirated programs can make clients experience bugs and glitches, which can lead to lost work, lost time as well as dissatisfaction. The hacks used to run these pirated programs can also meddle with how the software works, for example, keeping a program from getting online so that the pirated code is not detected can lead to loss of functionality in the software. Keeping aside the issues with the product itself, stolen software has fewer features and lack of access to client support, making it progressively harder to get help when issues happen.

Legal Risks

Making use of pirated programs results in high punishments under copyright law for people who are using these softwares and are reported to the authorities by the manufacturers. In the EU, copyright encroachment can prompt as long as five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. The proprietor of the product’s copyright can even sue for harms, which can keep running as high as $150,000 per software.

In spite of the fact that the possibility of software piracy may bring down the public image of the offender, theft frequently happens in organizations, putting whole organizations at lawful hazard. Indeed, even the U.S. Armed force was sued in the year 2013 for utilizing over $180 million in pirated programs, costing it a $50 million settlement. If it is the case that you realize an organization is utilizing pirated programs for commercial purposes or otherwise, you can report the wrongdoing secretly to an industry affiliation, for example, BSA or The Software and Information Industry Association.

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