According to a study released today, software piracy in Australia fell one percentage point from 29 per cent in 2006 to 28 per cent in 2007, amid a global trend in which piracy rates dropped in most countries. Industry losses due to software piracy in Australia also fell to AU $525.4 million in 2007.
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The study by the Business Software Alliance (BSA), an international association representing the global software industry covered 108 countries and was conducted independently by IDC.
However, the research comes as the BSA investigations in Australia have found a dramatic rise in the use of illegal software among WA companies struggling to keep up with the pace of expansion due to the booming mining sector.
In 2007, more than 50 per cent of all software piracy investigations in Australia involved Victorian companies.
Software piracy affects much more than just industry revenues. A BSA study released in January found that reducing software piracy could generate hundreds of thousands of new jobs, and billions of dollars in economic growth, while increasing tax revenues to support local programs and services.
According to IDC, reducing software piracy has a “multiplier effect. For every $1 spent on legitimate packaged software, an additional $1.25 is spent on related services from local vendors such as installing the software, training personnel and providing maintenance services.
In the Asia Pacific region, the highest-piracy countries were Bangladesh (92%), Sri Lanka (90%), Vietnam (85%) and China (82%). Among the lowest-piracy countries in the region were New Zealand (22%), Japan (23%) and Australia (28%).