The Hard Truth About Software Licensing

Ericka Chickowski, Entrpreneur, 7/19/2010 You think software is expensive? Wait until you start using it for free. The fees add up when businesses are caught using pirated or improperly licensed software. And groups such as the Business Software Alliance and the Software & Information Industry Association are on the hunt for offenders. But many companies…


Software Licensing: A Legal, Not Technology Issue

The Software & Information Industry Association is aggressively going after small and mid-size businesses, accusing them of software piracy. Many businesses are already under investigation, and facing potentially steep fines and bad publicity that could hurt their reputation with customers and business partners. Despite the fact that this is an issue involving software, it’s not…


Audit Inspections: How to Proceed with Inspecting Computers for Software Installations

The Business Software Alliance (BSA) is an organization that represents software companies and prosecutes alleged unlicensed use of those member companies’ software products.  The BSA generally initially sends a company a letter indicating the company may be out of compliance with applicable software license agreements and demanding that the company investigate and inspect each computer…


Program Pirates: Steering Clear of Software Audits

Christopher Danzig, Inside Counsel, 7/1/2009 Imagine you head a small company, with just a few dozen employees and computers. One day you receive a letter from a software industry trade group, such as the Business Software Alliance (BSA) or the Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA), informing you that it knows your company has unlicensed…


Beware of the Software License Police

Robert J. Scott, The Advocate, 2008 Shrinking IT budgetsts, fierce competition and a mature software market have increased the motivation for software publishers (such as Microsoft Corp., Adobe Systems Inc., Oracle) to conduct software licensing audits – demanding that their customers demonstrate ownership of licenses for all software installed on their computers. Software audits can…


What to Do When You Receive a BSA Audit Letter

Ericka Chickowski, Baseline, 01/18/2008 Let’s face it, software asset management (SAM) might be a best practice, but there are still plenty of organizations out there who haven’t instituted SAM due to a lack of resources or initiative. If your organization is one of them and the Business Software Alliance (BSA) hasn’t come calling yet, there’s…


Successfully Defending Software Audits

Robert J. Scott, The SciTech Lawyer, 2006 Shrinking IT budgets and fierce competition among software publishers have created explosive growth in the incidence and frequency of software audits—a mechanism by which software publishers investigate their customers to determine if they are in compliance with software licenses and copyright laws. In addition to developing internal enforcement operations, many publishers have engaged trade associations to perform enforcement activity under…


Software audits: not a case of if, but when

Kathleen Melymuka, Computerworld, 06/12/2006 Robert J Scott, managing partner of US legal and technology services firm Scott & Scott, gives a lowdown on how to handle software audits. “There are two types of companies: those that have been audited [for software violations] and those that will be.” So says Robert J Scott, managing partner of…