BSA | The Software Alliance is the leading advocate for the global software industry before governments and in the international marketplace. It is an association of world-class companies that invest billions of dollars annually to create software solutions that spark the economy and improve modern life.
BSA serves as the world's premier anti-piracy organization and as a respected leader in shaping public policies that promote technology innovation and drive economic growth.
Through government relations, intellectual property enforcement and educational activities around the world, BSA protects intellectual property and fosters innovation; works to open markets and ensure fair competition; and builds trust and confidence in information technology for consumers, businesses and governments alike.
Protecting Intellectual Property & Fostering Innovation
Intellectual property rights — copyrights, patents and trademarks — provide the legal framework for creative enterprise, the bedrock of growing economies. They are also essential to commercial software development, which is the world's largest copyright industry.
By working with policymakers, leading enforcement actions and conducting public-education initiatives around the world, BSA ensures that respect for IPR pervades the global economy and society.
- Championing Intellectual Property Rights: BSA works with governments around the world to ensure intellectual property protections keep pace with new innovations in technology, such as cloud computing.
- Curbing Software Theft: BSA conducts vigorous enforcement programs in approximately 50 countries, helping its members guard against software theft by taking legal action against commercial, end-user license infringement, counterfeiting operations and Internet piracy.
- Leading Industry Research: BSA publishes the most authoritative global studies on piracy and its economic impact, illuminating the scope of the problem and helping shape national and international policy responses.
- Educating the Public: BSA educates consumers about harms associated with software piracy and offers a groundbreaking training program to help organizations more effectively manage their software assets.
Opening Markets & Ensuring Fair Competition
Open markets are essential to economic growth and prosperity. BSA expands market opportunities for the software industry by working with governments to break down trade barriers and eliminate discriminatory procurement preferences that stifle innovation by skewing competition.
- Breaking Down Barriers to Growth: BSA provides policymakers with information, expert analysis and industry insights to promote an open-markets agenda. These efforts include a special focus on the BRIC economies, which are the world's fastest-growing technology markets but also home to rampant piracy.
- Promoting Technology Neutrality: BSA encourages fair competition among technologies by promoting internationally recognized standards and unbiased IT-procurement policies for governments.
- Supporting New Innovations: BSA works with policymakers around the world to create conditions for new technologies, such as cloud computing, to flourish. In addition to collaborating on technology standards, this work involves elevating intellectual property protections, harmonizing international legal principles and addressing other challenges that are beyond the capability or jurisdiction of any one company or government.
Building Trust & Confidence in Technology
Security and privacy undergird trust and confidence in information technology for consumers, businesses and governments. BSA promotes responsible data stewardship and facilitates acceptance and adoption of each new wave of innovation that transforms the technology marketplace and creates value for society.
- Driving Public-Private Collaboration: Drawing on the expertise of its members and productive working relationships with public officials, BSA serves as a knowledge center and catalyst to encourage cooperation and forge consensus among industry and governments.
- Protecting Consumers: As new technologies emerge, such as cloud computing, BSA and its members develop appropriate privacy and security standards and share their insights with policymakers and regulators.
- Mapping Policy Solutions: BSA has developed a global cybersecurity framework to guide governments in crafting policies that effectively deter and punish cyber crime, mitigate threats, inform and protect consumers, and respond to cyber incidents.
Anti-Piracy and Compliance Programs
The theft and illegal use of software and other forms of intellectual property (IP) is a serious global problem. Software piracy strains technology companies’ ability to innovate and create jobs, harms local IT services firms, saps government tax revenues, and increases the risk of cyber crime and security problems.
BSA works to expand legal software markets on a global scale, with special attention to the world’s top emerging markets. BSA does this through a combination of tactics:
- Investigations and enforcement: BSA solicits and receives thousands of reports of alleged software piracy each year from end users, resellers, law enforcement, member companies, and affiliate associations. BSA investigates these tips and ― when necessary and appropriate ― files civil lawsuits to stop software piracy. BSA refers particularly egregious cases to national law enforcement authorities for criminal prosecution.
- Fighting Internet-based piracy: BSA uses the latest technology to track the distribution of pirated software on the Internet via online auction sites, peer-to-peer sites, and other Internet channels. Each year, BSA issues thousands of requests to Internet service providers and Website managers to remove pirated software from their sites.
- Software asset management (SAM): BSA provides tools and resources to help organizations manage software in a way that reduces compliance risks and maximizes return on investment. BSA SAM Advantage is a long-term effort to help companies move more easily toward lasting adoption of the global SAM standards published by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).
- Education: One of the most effective ways that BSA prevents software piracy and the associated risks to society is by raising awareness of the negative impacts, which it does through the news media, school, and direct outreach to affected communities.