Microsoft might promise free upgrades for Windows and simplify its volume licensing with a new agreement, but the influx of cloud services, new devices and mobile apps means software licensing continues to be complex. A recent lawsuit should remind you that you can’t afford to lose track of what software your company is using.
Adobe, Autodesk and Corel have sued clothing retailer Forever 21 for “willful, intentional and malicious copyright infringement” for using Photoshop, Acrobat, Illustrator, Autodesk, PaintShopPro and WinZip without paying for enough licenses, “even after being contacted by Adobe regarding the infringement,” the lawsuit said.
Pirating software is usually about civil liability. Adobe, Autodesk and Corel are asking for lost revenue and damages, plus court costs. Criminal liability tends to be reserved for cases of software counterfeiting, according to Jodie Kelley, senior vice president and general counsel of BSA, The Software Alliance.