The Federation Against Software Theft (Fast) has reiterated its determination to crack down on the sale of pirated software on auction websites.
The announcement follows the launch of 17 auction piracy actions against individuals selling counterfeit software via eBay by the Software and Information Industry Association in the US.
“It does not take a rocket scientist to work out that software that should cost upwards of £100 that is being sold on an auction site for a few pounds is likely to be illegal,” said John Lovelock, chief executive of Fast.
Lovelock explained that, although the organisation’s focus remains on corporate misuse, and the use of high speed corporate internet links for questionable internet activity, it will be cracking down on individuals as well.
Fast reckons that copyright theft costs the UK economy millions of pounds in lost income every year.
A recent survey by the British Software Alliance concluded that a 10 per cent drop in illegal copying of software could add over 13,000 jobs and millions of pounds in tax revenue to the UK economy.
“Too many people think that software theft is a victimless crime, and that the big software corporations can ‘take the hit’. That is rubbish,” said Lovelock.
“If this activity is allowed to continue unchecked it will cause further harm to the UK economy and will put jobs at risk, something that we cannot afford in these uncertain economic times.”
Fast claims to have recovered over £8m for the UK software industry over the past eight years.