Software piracy is a huge problem, not only in the UK, but around the world, especially as more and more companies look for ways to try and save money. The thing that many people do not realise though is that not only is using pirated software illegal, but it could actually end up costing you more money than the software would have cost you.
Top 4 Reasons Why Pirated Software Could Cost You Money
Finding The Software
Unlike buying software, you can’t just go to a shop and pick the software up, or order it online from a trustworthy seller, you need to spend time browsing through websites which are usually full with unwanted adult ads, pop ups and viruses! Then when you think you have found the software, you realise it’s the actual software, it’s a dummy file that someone has used or even worse – a virus!
So, worst case scenario, you have been through loads of websites and picked up a couple of viruses, downloaded a few fakes programs which turned out to be viruses and you still don’t have the software you wanted! You now have to spend hours trying to clear your computer of the viruses – if you can! Depending on the severity of the virus, you may have to wipe your machine and start again! On the other hand, let’s say that you find the software without getting a virus. Most of the pirated software available on the internet contains some sort of virus. Think about it. Why would someone crack the software for you and give it away for free? Viruses can range from annoying pop ups and url redirects through to Trojan viruses allowing the creator full access to your machine, or possibly even corrupt your machine so much that you have to wipe it – and your data – and start again!
So you finally have the software installed and you are happy working away with it when the software creator releases an update for the software. Now what do you do? Do you install the update to keep up to date with the latest features and protect? If you do, will the software still work? Probably not. You then need to spend more time either trying to find a copy of the most recent software or a way of making the version you have work again. That’s more time wasted.
There are several organisations, as well as the software companies themselves who may ask you to perform an audit of your software licensing at any point. If you fail an audit, you are likely to be faced with a fine which can easily exceed 4 times the cost of the original license. As well as using various methods to track down companies using illegal software, many of them actually offer a financial payment to individuals – including current and ex employees – for information on companies which may be using illegal software.
So next time you need a new piece of software, just think, is it really worth the hassle and time, along with the potential fine you could get?