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BSA, GOP eye to educate corporate end-users about benefits of legalized software assets

Around the world, CIOs are finding unlicensed software is increasingly risky and expensive.

BSA and the Philippine government are teaming up to help business leaders address the ongoing issues related to the use of unlicensed software in the country.  Coming on the heels of a public notice shared by the Philippines’ Optical Media Board (OMB) earlier this week urging companies and individuals to stop using unlicensed software, BSA is launching “Legalize & Protect”, a campaign that aims to reach tens of thousands of business leaders with messages about the legal, productivity and security benefits of using licensed software.

BSA suggests that thousands of companies in the Philippines continue to utilize unlicensed software assets, posing serious business and security risks. BSA also suggests that as a result of the campaign, thousands of companies will legalize their various software products, moving from unlicensed and insecure software to legal software assets.

“Today is all about legalizing software use and protecting companies from the dangers of unlicensed software,” said BSA Senior Director Tarun Sawney. “Our goal is to help business leaders understand the imperative to legalize and recognize that investing in licensed software is good for their security, good for corporate reputation, good for corporate productivity and good for their bottom line.”

BSA is working with governments in major ASEAN markets to help the business communities understand the economic benefits of using legal software. According to IDC, businesses gain an average increase in profits of up to 11 percent based on legalized software assets. As a matter of national competitiveness, government leaders are encouraging the business community to convert to legal assets.

For its part, the OMB recognizes the importance of addressing the growing concerns on unlicensed software use among businesses, and has vowed to continue its sustained and concerted crackdown to ensure compliance. “We recognize that companies using legal software perform better, protect data better and bring more benefits to our country,” said Atty. Anselmo Adriano, Chairman and CEO, OMB. “Good and profitable corporations must legalize their software assets to protect the interests of their clients, their data and ultimately the health of their business.”

BSA is launching the “Legalize & Protect” campaign this week in Thailand, Indonesia, and the Philippines. Earlier, BSA launched a similar campaign in cooperation with the Vietnamese government with positive results. Companies targeted in the campaign are in a wide range of industries including, but not limited to, manufacturing, IT, finance, professional services, construction, healthcare, consumer goods, engineering, architecture, and design.

In the months ahead, BSA will launch public education efforts to ensure business leaders are aware of the risks of using unlicensed software.  This will include marketing, communications, social media content and in some cases, direct appeals to businesses to legalize their software assets.

The Asia Pacific region has the highest rate of unlicensed software use in the world at 57 percent.

Around the world, CIOs are finding unlicensed software is increasingly risky and expensive.

Organizations now face a one-in-three chance of encountering malware when they obtain or install an unlicensed software package or buy a computer with unlicensed software on it.  Each malware attack can cost a company US$2.4 million on average and can take up to 50 days to resolve. To the extent that the infection leads to company downtime or lost business data, it can also seriously affect the company’s brand and reputation. The cost for dealing with malware that is associated with unlicensed software is growing too. It can now cost a company more than US$10,000 per infected computer and cost companies worldwide nearly US$359 billion a year.

BSA has long collaborated with governments to educate business leaders about the negative consequences of using unlicensed software.  And this cooperation has brought positive results with annual reductions in the rate at which companies use unlicensed software. However, according to BSA, the problem continues to persist at unreasonable rates. “The ASEAN region is among the most dynamic economic areas of the world, and both domestic and multinational companies are growing and benefiting from the many opportunities in Southeast Asia,” said Mr. Sawney.  “But for companies in the ASEAN region to truly meet their ambitious goals, they must use safe, secure, licensed software.  Unlicensed software is a liability that is no longer acceptable anywhere.”

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