Melbourne-based engineering company pays undisclosed amount for using unlicensed software.
BSA Australia - an organisation representing mostly very large software companies - recently warned businesses to ensure the software they are using is correctly licensed. Less than a month later the body announced it had settled the first case of 2014.
Acting on behalf of Siemens PLM Software, the BSA reached a settlement with Denva Industries, a Melbourne-based engineering company. It involved the payment of undisclosed damages plus an undertaking to purchase the appropriate number of licences on an ongoing basis.
How does the BSA find out that a company is using more copies of software than the number of licences it has purchased?
The main weapon seems to be an ongoing offer of a bounty of up to $5000 for dobbing in an infringing 'business entity'. The exact amount is at the BSA's discretion, and payment is dependent on the informant agreeing to swear an affidavit and if necessary appearing as a witness.
In the US, payments of up to $US1 million can be made in cases involving multi-million settlements. According to the BSA's web site, recent local settlements range from $5,000 to $200,000.
A US informant leading to a $US200,000 settlement would be in line for up to $US10,000, as well as a promise that their identity will not be disclosed except under legal compulsion.