Let’s be honest, since before Napster, people have pirated copies of programs, games, and music, for both personal use and profit. Then, with the invention of things like in-home CD-R’s and MP3’s, digital piracy leapt into the future. The vast majority of thieves will never see a courtroom, but are you willing to take that chance with your business?
Today’s companies are heavily reliant on software. From registers and card readers to subscriptions with companies like Adobe and Microsoft, virtually every aspect of a business has been touched by software. So why would anyone want to get caught stealing the software that their business relies on?
Software companies invest large sums of money developing and improving their programs, and hate to see companies and individuals using their products without paying, even if it’s unintentional. The fines and fees associated with getting caught with software that isn’t licensed properly or is being misused, can be astronomical. Even if you didn’t mean to use the software maliciously, software companies only understand that you used it and they didn’t get paid for it.
Software companies will insist you pay them for the entire time you used their products and any fines and fees they have outlined in their contracts. And speaking of contracts, pay close attention to the ones you’ve signed. Some are blanket licenses that cover your company entirely, while other contracts only cover a set number of users within your company. Some companies have renewal rates that need to be paid at a set time, while some companies only want you to pay them once and provide you with ongoing support thereafter. It’s imperative you understand the terms you sign up for, it can make all the difference if they should come back around and ask you to pay them additional money.
Is it worth rolling the dice and taking a chance on whether or not your company is caught up on all its licenses and compliances? How important is having access to the programs you use day in and day out? How will losing access to these programs affect your company’s productivity, or will you even be able to operate? These are questions you should be asking yourself and your management.
Having a quality MSP company looking out for your digital assets can help prevent costly mistakes like this from happening. A company like Betterchips Consulting not only works to make sure your data is safe and your digital assets are operating optimally, but they also maintain and monitor your licenses and make sure you stay compliant.