Nigeria losing USD22m to software piracy
COMPUTING| Nov. 18, 2011, 2:13 p.m.
Microsoft Corporation estimates that losses due to software piracy have now reached a whopping USD1.5 billion annually, with Nigeria alone losing USD225 million.
According to the findings of new research which examined the financial impact using illegal software has on the competitive landscape in developing economies with manufacturing companies in Brazil, Russia, India and China as case studies, it was discovered that firms that chose to use illegal software steal more than USD1.5 billion from their in-market competitors that choose to play fair by using genuine software. These revelations were made to commemorate Microsoft’s global Play Fair Day which spotlights the impact pirated software causes in local economies.
And in the latest piracy research for Nigeria, the value of PC software theft reached a new peak at USD225 million in 2010. Up to 82% of software deployed on PCs during the year was discovered to be pirated.
“The ability to insert more than USD1.5 billion per year into these economies should be reason enough to play fair, regardless of the other inherent dangers pirated software brings to a business. Pirated and counterfeit software is lining the pockets of dangerous criminals. What’s more, when companies use pirated software, it hinders job opportunities and stifles innovation. It is also just plain wrong,” said Dale Waterman, Microsoft’s Corporate Attorney for Anti-Piracy for the Middle East and Africa region.
Commenting on this findings, Seye Oloruntoba, Anti-Piracy Manager at Microsoft Nigeria, said software piracy is an unfair game that hurts the economy and give nothing in return to people who patronise them.
“Software piracy is unfair play that ultimately hurts us all. Economic growth in Nigeria is thwarted by piracy – pirated software doesn’t create jobs for students, developers, or IT professionals. This is one of the key reasons we take our responsibility to educate consumers about the risks – and support local enforcement efforts by authorities like the NCC – extremely seriously,” Oloruntoba said.
Nigeria is experiencing a rising number of what turns out to be ‘accidental pirates’ – people who unintentionally purchased counterfeit software from resellers they believe to be reliable and only later found out that they have been duped. In doing so, they expose themselves to a plethora of risks, which in the long-run can prove extremely costly for individuals, and often disastrous for businesses.
“I purchased a copy of Windows 7 Ultimate from what I thought was a reputable shop in Abuja, believing that I was buying a genuine version. When I installed the CD on my PC, I received an alert that the copy was in fact not genuine. I spent N45,000 only to receive a copy of software I’ll never be able to use. I was cheated,” explained Ismail Sayi Pella, a victim of software piracy in Abuja.
It is becoming increasingly difficult to differentiate between genuine and non-genuine software, unless consumers are discerning and know what to look out for. Microsoft is advising consumers to educate themselves around how to tell whether their software and hardware are genuine, and to visit Microsoft’s anti-counterfeiting site http://www.howtotell.com.
“Every day we strive to compete in the global economy but when our competitors do not use legal software, it is very challenging. We take a lot of pride knowing that our decision to use legitimate software is not only helping to strengthen our business, but also helping us help other businesses grow,” said Nnamdi Ezeji of High Performance Distribution.
Last month, the Nigerian Copyright Commission (NCC) raided the premises of Wisdom System Technologies Limited, a computer reseller located in Tinubu, Lagos Island following a consumer tip-off, an undercover test purchase and a subsequent petition to the local law enforcement authorities by Microsoft Corporation. The raid is the latest in a series of enforcement activities by the NCC in recent months, aimed at curbing unfair play in the country, and addressing the harmful impact to individuals as well as the Nigerian economy caused by pirating software.
MORE COMPUTING NEWS
Botswana women missing from ICTThere has been a rallying call for women in Botswana to consider a lifetime participation in the Information and Communication Technology if the sector is to realise any meaningful growth as well as a fair gender representation. Read More
Globecomm, Tanzania Support Foundation take computers to rural schoolGlobecomm announced today that it has donated desktop computers to a school in the Tanzanian village of Selela to aid the mission of the Tanzanian Support Foundation to help small communities become more self-sufficient in education, healthcare, hygiene and clean water. Read More
The Network is dead. Long live the network!Your network is vastly bigger than the Internet itself, says Infoblox. Read More
Schneider Electric’s off-grid solar and backup power inverter/charger now in southern AfricaSchneider Electric Solar Business, a global leader in solutions for the solar power conversion chain, has released its off-grid solar and backup power inverter/charger, the Conext SW, in the southern African region. Read More
Phase3 seeks digitally enhanced life for special needs kidsWest Africa’s largest independent fibre optic infrastructure and telecommunications services provider, Phase3 Telecom, has urged stakeholders in the ICT industry to offer children living with disabilities a good quality of life through the deployment of assistive technology. Read More
Kenya, China partner to grow ICT skillsGlobal technology company Huawei, in partnership with Kenya’s Ministry of Information and Technology, has dispatched to China the first beneficiaries of the “Huawei Seeds for the Future” Internship programme. Read More
Big trends for 2015Industry experts share their thoughts on the innovations that will impact business next year. Read More
ASUS appoints Andre Goosen as Country Service ManagerASUS, the Taiwanese technology innovation brand, has appointed Andre Goosen to the position of Country Service Manager, a new role created in line with ASUS’ increased focus on after sales service. Read More
iWayAfrica managed service solution launched in KenyaPan African telecoms operator, Gondwana International Networks (GIN) has announced that its iWayAfrica business has launched a managed infrastructure and services solution in Kenya. Read More
Kenya Ports Authority first to deploy Pamoja’s RUBiQ cloud platformThe Kenya Ports Authority is the first institution in East Africa to adopt the RUBiQ Cloud-based governance, risk and compliance platform. Read More
FEATURED STORYPWC: Optimism abounds but a bumpy journey ahead for some
PwC’s ‘Capital Projects & infrastructure in East Africa, Southern Africa and West Africa,’ report says infrastructure spend in the region is projected to reach $180bn per annum by 2025.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHAfrica lags on digital migration
Only three African countries have so far completed the digital migration process, and serious issues are hampering the migration in other nations.