Unlicensed Software Use Still High Globally Despite Costly Cybersecurity Threats
This BSA survey from 2016 found that computer users around the globe use unlicensed software at an alarming rate, despite being well aware of the associated cybersecurity dangers. 39% of software installed on computers around the world in 2015 is not properly licensed, representing only a modest decrease from 43& in BSA’s previous global study in 2013.
Even in certain critical industries, where much tighter control of the digital environment would be expected, unlicensed use was surprisingly high. BSA found the worldwide rate is 25 percent for the banking, insurance and securities industries.
The survey, which canvassed consumers, IT managers and enterprise PC users, reinforces that use of unlicensed software is still high, and that individuals and companies are playing with fire when they use unlicensed software. This is due to the strong connection between cyberattacks and the use of unlicensed software. Where unlicensed software is in use, the likelihood of encountering malware dramatically goes up. And the cost of dealing with malware incidents can be staggering. In 2015 alone, for example, cyberattacks cost businesses over $400 billion, according to BSA.