FAST finds seriously low understanding of copyright among directors

The Federation Against Software Theft (FAST) discovered "seriously low levels of understanding" of software licensing in non-IT company directors.

The first phase of the FAST Corporate Awareness Campaign found that less than five per cent of directors were confident that the proper software management processes were in place in their companies and 60 per cent didn't realise they might be liable and could be prosecuted under copyright law. In fact, 85 per cent did not know how copyright law covered software, though 80 per cent had heard of software theft.

Fear of the unknown, confusion about multi-user licences, and costly, time-consuming software audits were identified by FAST as key issues. FAST's campaign will lead to 35,000 managing directors receiving advice from the DTI on the risks of copyright infringement, and on how to avoid two years in jail and unlimited fines for owning illegal software.