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Talk like a Pirate, but Don’t Be a Pirate

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“Ahoy ye maties! We be takin’ cannon fire on the port side! Gird up ye trousers! Yarrrr!” That is pirate talk for “Greetings fellow employee. Our server is being rebooted, so be sure to save all of your work!” This translation exercise is to help prepare you for International Talk Like a Pirate Day on September 19th.

Stereotypical pirates are easy to spot, with their rough voices, peglegs, parrots, and puffy shirts. Modern pirates are a little more low-key; in fact, with the way they dress and talk they can easily blend into any office setting. These khaki wearing scallywags are software pirates, and they are the scurvy of the digital sea.

The Business Software Alliance estimated that in 2011, 42% of all PC software installed was pirated, costing companies an estimated $63 billion. Companies then try to recoup their losses by passing this expense on to you, the buyer of legitimate software. This in turn hurts your bottom line.

Software companies are fighting back with more and more aggressive measures, and the law is on their side. If a pirate is caught with illegally copied software, they can be sued for civil copyright infringement up to $100,000 per title infringed, and if the transgression is charged as a criminal violation, the fine can be up to $250,000 per title and up to 5 years imprisonment.

The penalties for using or distributing pirated software are stiff; they are the modern equivalent to “walking the plank.” What if you find your business on the plank? What if one of your employees is running pirated software? Remember that 42% of all PC software is pirated, this opens up a real chance that some of the programs on your network could be illegally installed, putting you and your reputation at risk if fined. Additionally, there is also the risk of viruses and malware being attached to the illegal software due to its shady third party origins.

Don’t fear the pirates! At TMS we can check your software and determine if it is legally installed or not, and if we do happen to find evidence of piracy, we can install the legal version while keeping your documents intact and help you manage your software licenses. For added protection, TMS can provide regular maintenance on your system and keep track of the up-to-date licensing software agreements. Give us a call today at 1 (626) 737-2960 and let us help you protect your most important asset; your booty.