Is Software Piracy Killing Your Business?

The unfortunate truth about apps and software is that there are many people out there with the necessary skills to pirate the software. Software piracy is widespread and continues to pose a threat to the revenues of the developers and software companies.

What is software piracy?

When people buy a software or app, they are only getting to use its services with a licensed key. That doesn’t give them the right to share, copy or distribute this software without authorization. Any act of using a software without the consent of the makers, i.e. using unethical means, is called piracy. Example – downloading cracked software by torrents or using fake license keys to unlock premium features.

Why do people pirate a software?

There are different reasons why people pirate a software or app. Sometimes, if the price of the app is perceived to be too high by an individual, they will look for alternate ways of using that app for free or a discounted price. On the other hand there are those with a more selfish reason. They tend to copy and crack the software and sell it to others, and make money in the process. None of this money goes to the makers of the software. Alternately, there are hackers who just get a rush out of finding security flaws in the code.

How does that affect the software company?

When people use pirated copies of a software, they are essentially using its services without paying for it. This is similar to using the services of the gas station without paying for the gas – the owner loses money. As a result of software piracy, many software companies and developers who have spent hundreds of hours to make this product are not paid justly. They lose money and some even close down due to that, leaving the masterminds behind the software unemployed.

So how can software companies prevent getting robbed by pirates?

That’s a question that has baffled app developers and software companies for a long time. The truth is that there is no particular answer to this. Preventing software piracy is a continuous process that keeps evolving with time. The ways piracy was done a decade ago has changed, and the techniques to fight those piracy attempts have changed as well. However, some core points remain the same, so here are some tips to help you be better equipped to prevent piracy of your software or app.

  • Start out with security in mind. Many developers these days write the code for the application first and once the app is working, they start thinking about the security issues. Instead, you should start thinking about the security & piracy concerns from the very beginning and integrate them on the go.
  • Make sure that the same license key cannot be used by multiple people. You might want to go for an advanced application to help you create secure license keys for your software products.
  • Go freemium. Release a version of your software with reduced set of features and give it to the masses. That way, people will settle for the free version instead of pirating, and those who really love your software will go ahead and purchase the premium package.
  • Be vigilant. Constantly look out for pirated versions of your software or app on the store and on various forums and torrent sites. If you spot anything, contact the moderator or owner of that website or app store, and have it removed.
  • Regularly update your software.

 

Piracy of apps and software is an ongoing problem. Don’t get frightened if you face it, rather come up with a strategy on how to bounce back from this and continue to do better with your software and apps. Remember that there is always room for improvements.

How Being Digitally Connected Can Save you Money

At this point in the game, it is near impossible to be completely “disconnected” from the digital world. Entire economies, institutions, and communities are dependent on the internet and having access to it. As with every major shift in society, there is a pull in the opposite direction, towards being “unplugged”, private, and independent of the digital dimension. Now a healthy balance is always key to reaping benefits from both schools of thought. However, did it ever occur to you that by being “online” can save you serious money?

  •  Working remotely

Forget about toll routes, gas money and carpooling. The internet has opened an opportunity for entire companies to operate remotely. Whether that means that employees have a more flexible schedule or there are more satellite offices, companies are tapping into the internet to save them, and their employees, money. Thankfully, technologies supporting these trends have continued to evolve and now a good knowledge management system is not only online but also collaborative. Some even argue that they feel more in sync and connected with their colleagues thanks to these systems than when they all worked in the same office.

  • Personal and professional relationships

Long distance telephone calls and reunion trips continue to be a costly expenditure for those who want to stay connected with family and friends that live far away. Thankfully, we now have a range of virtually free alternatives with which we can speak and even see our loved ones. Programs like Skype allow for video calls, something that other apps like Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, and Viber are starting to pick up on and perfect. This means that as long as both sides have access to the internet, you can completely forego long-distance calling and overcome the distance.

  • Advertise relevant sales and exclusive offers on FB

Social media platforms are getting smarter and smarter and by now you will have noticed that your Facebook has been showing you advertisements that they think that are relevant to you and Google ads reflect your recent searches. This is no coincidence! As scary as thought that they know so much about us is, use it to your advantage.  Take note of sales, promotions, and exclusive online offers that companies are offering. It could really be a chance to save a lot of money on purchases that you might have made anyway.

  • Contests

Online contests are becoming more and more popular and are easier to participate in than ever. No more phone calls, mailing in coupons, etc. With as little as a click you can be entered to win anything from a product sample to a major jackpot.

  • Online shopping

Taking your shopping digital can be a real time and money saver. Even if you are wary of purchasing clothing or other items online without seeing them first, use company websites to compare their offering and their prices before ever visiting the store. This way you can avoid a lot of traveling between stores and already know if the exact same or similar object or service is available elsewhere for a better price. Online shopping also gives you the chance to take your shopping to a global level, so that you aren’t just restricted to the selection and the prices that you have in your immediate vicinity.

 It’s true that some of us are too dependent on our phones and on the internet, even to the point of missing out on the “real world”. But before you decide to cut yourself off from the digital word, consider the benefits that being connected could give you, not just for entertainment, but also for your wallet.