Wibu-Systems Blog

Unlicensed Software Usage Poses Multi-Billion Dollar Industry Problem

Posted by Terry Gaul on Nov 10, 2014 9:46:01 AM


Source BSA 2013 Global Software Survey

Unlicensed software usage continues to pose a multi-billion dollar industry problem – did you know there is a solution?

The BSA 2013 Global Software Survey released earlier this year once again presented some alarming statistics on the financial and commercial impact of unlicensed software usage.

Conducted semi-annually by BSA | The Software Alliance (www.bsa.org), the survey found “that 43 percent of the software installed on personal computers around the world in 2013 was not properly licensed. That marked an uptick from 42 percent in BSA’s previous global study two years prior. The commercial value of this unlicensed software was estimated to be over $62 billion.

By geographic area, the unlicensed software usage rate cited some familiar statistics:

Area % Unlicencensed
Software Usage
Asia-Pacific 62%
Central and Eastern Europe 61%
Latin America 59%
Middle East and Africa 59%
Western Europe 29%
North America 19%
Source: BSA Global Software Survey

And, the magnitude of the problem is not simply a software monetization and piracy issue for ISVs, but a major security concern for enterprises as well.

Among the security risks associated with unlicensed software, the survey noted that 64 percent of users cited unauthorized access by hackers as a top concern and 59 percent cited loss of data. Topping the list of concerns for IT managers was the risk of losing data, followed by unauthorized access to company information, the time and costs involved in disinfecting, and loss of intellectual property or proprietary information.

The survey noted the importance of using genuine, properly licensed software remains critical — particularly as cyber security threats proliferate. Finally, the survey concluded that the global cyber security threat environment has in fact been worsening — and that trend has been exacerbated in part by vulnerabilities associated with illegitimate software.

So, what should software vendors make of this disheartening data?

Try this way of thinking: What if you could envision a solution where your software is protected by strong AES and ECC encryption and licenses were easily protected by the most secure hardware-based (dongles) or software-based measures? Only licensed, authenticated users could access your software. Then consider a licensing solution that is flexible enough to enable you to package your software to optimally meet the unique needs of each of your end-user market segments. Now, you have not only protected your software and secured its licensing, but also monetized your software business model to achieve greater revenues. And, you’ve also helped your customers to protect their data from cyber attacks.

The solution I am referring to, of course, is Wibu-Systems’ CodeMeter all-in-one licensing, security, and copy protection platform for desktop, SaaS, and cloud-based applications. CodeMeter employs proven  technologies and is designed to provide the ultimate in software protection and secure licensing while being very easy to use. Thousands of ISVs and industrial manufacturers around the world use CodeMeter to protect their software, digital assets and Intellectual property.

I invite you to learn more about CodeMeter, view our short video, or download our free Evaluation System and see for yourself how easy it is to license and protect your software. Together, perhaps we can change the next survey data for the better.

Topics: CodeMeter, software copy protection, Copy Protection