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What are the Different Methods of Reporting Piracy?

By M.R. Anglin
Updated May 16, 2024
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There are several different methods of reporting piracy. These methods include contacting watch groups, e-mailing the publisher of the pirated software, calling piracy hotlines, and filling out online forms.

Piracy can cause the software development industry millions of dollars. Resources that could be going toward software development is instead diverted to anti-piracy research which means that it takes longer for new software to be developed. By reporting piracy, users can help protect the software industry.

The first method of reporting piracy is to e-mail the software publisher. Many publishers have a special e-mail that you can use to report suspected piracy. Many times this e-mail is something like piracy@publisher.com, where “publisher” is replaced by the name of the company. However, you should look at the publisher’s website to be certain. If you e-mail, you should provide the company with as much information as possible, including the name of the company you suspect is making or selling pirated software, their address and phone number, the contact name for the company, why you suspect piracy, names of suspected pirated products, and number of suspected product installations. You do not have to tell them your name.

You can also use the phone when reporting piracy. A little research on the publisher’s web page will help you find the appropriate phone number for your area. When phoning, you will need to be prepared to offer some of the same basic information as you would give on an e-mail. Again, it is not necessary to provide personal information. If you do share your personal information, be sure to check the company’s privacy policy first.

Another way of reporting piracy is through an online form on the publisher’s website. Using an online form, you can put in the known information and leave out the unknown. It should be noted that some information, such as the company suspected of piracy’s name and contact information will probably be required. Again, your name and contact information is not required. However, it will be useful for the company to get more information.

You can also report piracy using a watch group’s website. There are global organizations dedicated to ensuring that software is able to be freely and legally distributed. Some of these websites may even offer rewards for tips. Even if rewards are not offered, reporting piracy helps the software companies protect their interests. It also helps consumers by allowing publishers to develop new and upgraded software.

In order to avoid becoming a victim of piracy, there are some simple steps to follow. Be sure you only buy products from the publisher or an authorized retailer. The software should come with a manual and a user license. If you suspect your software is pirated, contact the publisher for more information. They will be able to further assist you.

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Discussion Comments

By Viranty — On Dec 11, 2013

In this day and age, cyber-crimes are a lot easier to track than most people think. Though the World Wide Web appears to be anonymous, it is anything but. Whether in the United States, Australia, or even India, anything online can be traced from an IP Address.

By RoyalSpyder — On Dec 10, 2013

@Hymnomove - I agree that reporting might be helpful with the issue of enforcement. More than often, crimes may go unresolved because enough action isn’t taken to ensure that something needs to be done.

By Hymnomove — On Dec 09, 2013
It isn't just you Jolecter. The FBI also considers software piracy a form of theft (intellectual property theft). Even though it is a crime, it is often difficult to enforce the laws about it. Perhaps more reporting would help with the issue of enforcement.
By Jolecter — On Dec 09, 2013

Though I know that many people don't consider it so, in my opinion, piracy of software is stealing.

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