Irish Software piracy higher than EU average


1 April 2005

Ireland has a software piracy rate of 41 per cent, meaning that almost one in every two software programs installed in Ireland is an illegal copy, according to global piracy study by IDC and the Business Software Alliance (BSA).

The rate in the European Union stands at 37 per cent. There are nine EU countries with a lower piracy rate than Ireland – Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Netherlands, Sweden and the UK, which has a 29 per cent piracy rate.

The study estimates that the cost to national and international software publishers in the region was also revealed with pirated software valued at over EUR8billion.

The results confirm that software piracy continues to be a major issue in Ireland. Julian McMenamin, chairman of BSA Ireland said that Ireland could benefit to the tune of over 2,400 new jobs and in excess of EUR236m in tax revenues if the rate by just 10 per cent.
‘Ireland is the largest exporter of software in the world but with a software piracy rate of 41 per cent our valuable software industry is being seriously undermined as we fail to recognise the value of software and demonstrate strong IP protection,’ Julian McMenamin continued.

As the study was conducted for the first time by global technology research firm IDC, this year’s BSA global piracy study cannot be compared accurately to the previous year’s findings as the methodology is different. That rate was 42 per cent, making the 41 per cent calculated by this year’s survey not that wide of the mark.

The study incorporates major software market segments including operating systems, consumer software and local market software.  The inclusion of these new categories paints a broader, more
accurate picture of the software piracy problem, the BSA said.

For its analysis, IDC drew upon its worldwide data for software and hardware shipments, conducted more than 5,600 interviews in 15 countries, and used its in-country analysts around the globe to evaluate local market conditions. IDC identified the piracy rate and
value of pirated software by using propriety IDC models for PC, software and license shipments by all industry vendors in 86 countries.

Steven Frantzen, managing director for Central & Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa at IDC said: ‘For every €1 of software sold, an additional €1-2 goes to local services, distribution and supply companies, demonstrating that local economies have much to gain from a reduction in piracy.’

The BSA does not have a formal position on the ‘grey market’, the subject of Channels survey reported last month, but its advocates having good software asset management policies in place and recommends that customers make sure that their software suppliers
are obtaining software products from authorised distribution channels.


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