Sage Africa Newsroom

Q&A with Fabien Poggi – VP Sales Mid-Market

What is the impact of counterfeiting on the software industry?

17 June 2016

  1. What is your role in SAGE?
    “I'm VP Sales, in other words Sales Director, of the Mid-Market division for France and for Export. So with my Managers and our colleagues I am responsible for promoting and disseminating our Management software to small and medium-sized enterprises.”

  2. What is the scale of software counterfeiting in a few key figures?
    “The BSA working in collaboration with IDC conducted and published a study at the end of May reporting that 39% of the software installed on all the world's computers in 2015 was non-compliant and most astonishing is the fact that this even concerns sensitive industries such as banking and insurance where the proportion of non-compliant software is 25%!” 

  3. Who is affected by this counterfeiting apart from software developers?
    “Software piracy impedes economic growth and job creation. It deprives governments of essential tax revenue. But the primary victims of this escalating phenomenon are local partners of developers such as integrators who provide training, configuration services and product support.” 

  4. And what about users of these pirated versions?
    “Use of pirated software is the result of short-term vision: why buy what I can get for free?
    Unfortunately the bill very quickly mounts up!
    Besides the legal risks, there are very real technical and financial risks such as increased exposure to computer viruses, risks of data loss, being unable to take advantage of updates and lack of technical assistance.
    The BSA study mentioned earlier points out that use of illegal software encourages cyberattacks and strongly increases the likelihood of malware infection. In 2015 alone for example, enterprises falling victim to cyberattacks lost over 350 billion Euro.”

  5. What measures have you taken to combat this scourge?
    “At Sage we have always been very involved in the fight against counterfeiting.
    We focus very much on prevention by means of awareness raising campaigns via press articles, exhibitions, conferences and seminars to meet with company bosses, magistrates, lawyers, etc. And our partners.
    We also work on technical protection with activation keys and detection systems integrated into our software.
    Lastly, we reserve the right to take legal action in courts of law, both civil and criminal, when necessary.”

  6. How do you see the future with this illegal trade?
    “Physical media are the main targets of counterfeiting. However, the arrival of cloud-based computing tends to encourage a more optimistic outlook.
    SaaS mode as it continues to become widespread will curb counterfeiting owing to technological changes. It will become impossible to replicate the entire functional scope of a professional software program with a view to selling it. There may still be loopholes in the case of malicious acts or other acts connected with technical failure, but in all cases this will be considerably reduced compared with what we have encountered to date.”

  7. To finish, could you say a few words on counterfeiting in areas other than software?
    As a consumer I am very concerned about this subject. I am shocked by the fact that one in two medicines in Africa is counterfeit. And dismayed by the existence of counterfeit replacement parts for aircraft and vehicles.