New international agreement steps up fight against software piracy

04 Sep, 2012

Federation Against Software Theft (FAST) and Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA) join forces against software theft within UK, Europe and the U.S.A.

 

The Federation Against Software Theft (FAST) has today announced a formal alliance with U.S.A. based Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA) with the aim of expanding the reach of both operations in their work against software theft.

Julian Heathcote Hobbins (pictured), General Council of FAST said: “Software piracy is a global problem and does not recognise national legal jurisdictions. Criminal activity can be conducted from nearly anywhere in the world. While FAST and the SIIA have made significant progress in their respective countries, there is a lot more we can achieve by sharing our knowledge and working together on key issues.”

According to the terms of the agreement, FAST and SIIA will:

  • Work together to promote better intellectual property regulation, sharing best practice between the two countries to influence government and policy.
  • Support more effective enforcement against those that infringe copyright and IP ownership.

The formal memorandum of understanding comes at a time when online piracy shows no sign of abating. According to the BSA’s Global Software Piracy study published earlier in 2012, which surveyed 15,000 computer users from across 33 countries globally, 57 per cent of the respondents admitted to acquiring pirated software in the last year. This was up from 42% in 2010. When looking at the commercial value of this software piracy has risen from $58.8 billion in 2010 to $63.4 billion, a new record. As these figures suggest, software piracy is becoming far easier to conduct, so it has never been more important for groups that represent the software industry to work closer together.

FAST is a not-for-profit organisation whose aim is to reduce, restrict and lessen the incidence of unauthorised dealings in software. It works on many fronts to promote software compliance and protect its members’ rights through awareness, enforcement, lobbying and promoting standards and best practice in business. Likewise SIIA is an association that provides global services in government relations, business development, corporate education and intellectual property protection.

This collaboration will benefit the membership of both parties, broadening the scope of both organisations so that work can be carried out on a global basis. This will include FAST and the SIIA assisting each other with corporate and Internet anti-piracy matters taking place within the UK, Europe, and the US on a case-by-case basis.

Keith Kupferschmid, General Counsel and VPO of Intellectual Property at SIIA, concludes:“The partnership between SIIA and FAST can only strengthen our offering to our membership group. The global reach of the two parties will add value to our anti-piracy campaigns across the continents, which can only benefit the fight against piracy and software theft for corporations.”

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