According to a study, almost half of personal computers (PCs) in the world use illegal software of some sort. The study also shows that hardware theft is more rampant in more sophisticated and developing economies.
In a study conducted by the Business Software Alliance (BSA), it found that 13 percent of PC users in the world buy genuine software, while 40 percent of the world’s computer using population bought their computer software “mostly legally.”
The rest, or 47 percent, have pirated software installed in their computers. These software “thieves” have acquired their programs via illegal means, such as buying pirated copies on markets, or downloading it from P2P networks and other sources.
The research firm noted that a large majority of computer users in developing economies get their software via illegal means. Users usually purchase a single genuine program and install it on multiple devices, or download form P2P networks, despite their countries’ support for IP principles.
China leads all countries in the study, with 86 percent of is PC users acquiring software illegally most of the time. Chinese users account for 206 million PCs, twice as many as the second placer the United States.
“The survey makes it clear that the global software piracy epidemic is spreading fastest in China, which is now the world’s biggest market for new PCs,” said Robert Holleyman, president and chief executive of BSA.
The study involved 15,000 PC users who live in 32 countries.