Nearly Half of the World's PC Users Acquire Software Illegally Most or All the Time

Press release from the issuing company

Thursday, September 8th, 2011

Nearly half of the world's personal computer users — 47 percent — acquire software through illegal means most or all of the time, and in developing economies the figures are much higher, according to the most extensive survey ever undertaken on PC users' behaviors and attitudes toward software piracy and intellectual property rights.

TheBusiness Software Alliance(BSA) today released detailed findings from the groundbreaking study on its official blog,BSA TechPost. Ipsos Public Affairs conducted the research for BSA by surveying approximately 15,000 PC users in 32 countries. This included 400 to 500 in-person or online interviews per country.

The study finds that large majorities of computer users in the developing world regularly acquire software through illegal means — such as buying a single license for a program and then installing it on multiple machines, or downloading programs from peer-to-peer networks — even though they express support for intellectual property principles.

Chinahad a higher percentage of these regular software pirates among its PC-using population than any other country surveyed, followed byNigeria,Vietnam,Ukraine,Malaysia,Thailand,Indonesia,Saudi Arabia,South Korea, andMexico.

The study finds that significant majorities of software pirates in developing markets incorrectly believe that typically illegal means of acquiring software are, in fact, legal. At the same time, they believe software piracy is common, and they think it is unlikely that software pirates will be caught.

Critically, business decision-makers around the world exhibit behaviors and opinions that are similar to those of other computer users.

"It took hundreds of millions of thieves to steal$59 billionworth of software last year. Now we have a better understanding of what they were thinking," said BSA President and CEORobert Holleyman. "The evidence is clear: The way to lower software piracy is by educating businesses and individuals about what is legal — and ramping up enforcement of intellectual property laws to send clearer deterrent signals to the marketplace."

Pirate Populations by Country


Country

Always Illegal

Mostly Illegal

All Regular Pirates*

China

42%

44%

86%

Nigeria

36%

46%

81%

Vietnam

22%

54%

76%

Ukraine

16%

53%

69%

Malaysia

22%

46%

68%

Thailand

15%

50%

65%

Indonesia

14%

50%

65%

Saudi Arabia

23%

39%

62%

South Korea

15%

45%

60%

Mexico

19%

41%

60%

Brazil

14%

41%

55%

Colombia

12%

43%

54%

Chile

13%

40%

53%

Russia

9%

43%

52%

Spain

13%

37%

50%

Poland

15%

33%

48%

Czech Republic

10%

37%

47%

Turkey

13%

29%

43%

Argentina

10%

29%

39%

Italy

11%

25%

37%

Australia

11%

26%

37%

USA

8%

26%

34%

Switzerland

5%

26%

31%

Netherlands

5%

25%

30%

United Kingdom

7%

23%

30%

Japan

9%

20%

29%

Sweden

5%

24%

29%

India

9%

19%

28%

Canada

7%

20%

27%

France

5%

21%

26%

Germany

6%

15%

21%

South Africa

5%

16%

20%

(*Totals may not add up due to rounding.)

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