The Business Software Alliance (BSA), the global trade association representing the software industry, recently announced that it had entered into a settlement agreement with a Japanese manufacturer based in Kansai for software licence infringement. The settlement amount of 315,205,272 Japanese yen (circa US$3.3 million), made this the largest ever settlement agreement for BSA worldwide, the BSA said.
The case, which originated from a report lodged with the BSA Japan software piracy hotline, resulted in a software audit being undertaken at the premises of the company. 3,913 copies of unlicensed software, including Adobe® Illustrator®, AutoCAD®, FileMaker® Pro, and Microsoft® Office, belonging to BSA members Adobe, Autodesk, Filemaker and Microsoft, were found.
Robert Holleyman, President and Chief Executive Officer of the BSA says, “Software piracy remains a critical issue around the globe. Governments must remain vigilant in enforcing IP laws, and businesses must be equally as vigilant in managing their software assets carefully and legally.”
In Sri Lanka the BSA works together with American Chamber of Commerce in Sri Lanka (AMCHAM) and recently, with the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) announced the establishment of a special anti piracy and counterfeit unit within the CID, to address crimes related to the infringement of intellectual property rights of innovators and original creations.
Shalini Ratwatte, BSA Consultant for Sri Lanka, stated: “In Sri Lanka, there are cases (much smaller than Japan) where foreign companies may assume that if their overseas parent companies are licensed, they are automatically covered under their parent company’s licensing agreements. These companies may have to revisit their assumptions, as they run the risk of being non-compliant. We will drive initiatives that are designed to assist organizations to realize better returns from their investments in information technology.”