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VietNamNews

Laws fail to deter firms from utilising unlicensed software

Update: August, 26/2014 - 09:38
Dao Anh Tuan, a representative of BSA/the Software Alliance in Viet Nam, said software only accounts for 5-6 per cent of a company's costs, not large compared with the costs involved in resolving problems related to using unlicensed software.— Photo ictnews.vn

HCM CITY (VNS)  — More companies including foreign ones have been found using unlicensed software despite many warnings about the potential risks they face, the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism's inspectorate reported.

Tran Van Minh, the ministry's deputy chief inspector, said this year they have carried out surprise audits and spot checks at about 60 companies around the country to ascertain compliance with software ownership laws.

They found that apart from domestic companies and computer dealers, some wholly foreign-owned businesses, who know the law better than anyone else, were also among the wrong-doers.

For instance, in Ha Noi in July the inspectorate along with other agencies like the Hi-tech Crime Police inspected South Korean-owned JB Steel Engineering Viet Nam Development Company Ltd and found a lot of unlicensed software used for business purposes.

They were mostly Autodesks design applications such as AutoCAD and Microsoft's popular Office software.

The wholly foreign-owned company specialises in engineering software development for export.

Since it takes outsourced jobs, the company should be familiar with the laws and cannot plead ignorance.

The company confirmed to Viet Nam News that officials had caught it using unlicensed software, but refused to provide further information, saying the director was not in the office and no one else was authorised to talk to the media.

Dao Anh Tuan, a representative of BSA/the Software Alliance in Viet Nam, said software only accounts for 5-6 per cent of a company's costs, not large compared with the costs involved in resolving problems related to using unlicensed software.

Using licensed software is beneficial to businesses not only because it protects them from legal risks but also provides technical support in the form of patches and others, he said.

The latter is particularly important given the growing incidence of high-tech crimes and malware, he added. The inspectors said that along with public communication and education, enforcement would be stepped up to ensure businesses comply with the law. — VNS


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