A third of South Africans use unlicensed software

A survey published by BSA/The Software Alliance, a non-profit, global trade association, has found that in South Africa, 32% of software installed on computers was not properly licensed. This is down a fraction from the previous report which was published in 2016.

Commercial value of unlicensed software installed in South Africa was found to be R2.964 billion, the report said.

This rate of use has been influenced in part by important trends under way in South Africa including stable and effective enforcement and great cooperation between industry and government, BSA said.

2011 2013 2015 2017
Rates of unlicensed software installation 32% 33% 34% 35%
Commercial value of unlicensed software ($M) $241 $274 $385 $564

Globally, CIOs noted that personal and corporate data theft is their primary concern related to malware that can accompany unlicensed software. As a result, more than half of surveyed CIOs cited cybersecurity risks as the number one reason to avoid unlicensed software (54%), with a lower risk of legal issues being the second (43%).

Use of unlicensed software, while down slightly, is still widespread. Unlicensed software is still used around the globe at alarming rates, accounting for 37% of software installed on personal computers – only a two point drop from 2016.

CIOs report unlicensed software is increasingly risky and expensive. Malware from unlicensed software costs companies worldwide nearly $359 billion a year

Read: SA companies paid out R5.2 million for using unlicensed software in 2017

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A third of South Africans use unlicensed software