Software piracy still rife in Brazil

Half of all licenses in use are not original - but the situation is even worse in other Latin countries

About 50 percent of all software licenses in Brazil are not original - but piracy is going down in relation to previous years, according to a Business Software Alliance (BSA) study.

The BSA research carried out by IDC suggests that despite the fact the percentage of pirate software in use is still high, it is progressively decreasing: in 2007, about 59 percent of all software in Brazil was not obtained from official sources and in 2011, it was 53 percent.

The market of licensed software generates approximately $2.9bn in Brazil per year, but without piracy it would generate twice as much, according to the BSA research, which highlights that most of the piracy in Brazil occurs inside corporate environments - firms will either use pirate software only or buy some licenses and use mostly fake copies.

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However, Brazil is doing better than its Latin American neighbors when the subject is piracy: the study suggests that the unlicensed software rates in Argentina and Venezuela are 69 percent and 88 percent respectively. Other countries where piracy levels are high include China with 74 percent and Indonesia with 84 percent.

According to the BSA, the uptake of more accessible cloud computing tools such as Google Docs should help lower piracy. A separate study by Frost & Sullivan suggests that the Brazilian cloud computing market should see a jump in market revenues from $328.8m in 2013 to $1.1bn by 2017.

The BSA study on software piracy has been carried out since 2007 and the latest edition involved 22,000 domestic and business users, as well as 2,000 IT managers in 34 countries.