Software Piracy

Information and statistics about software piracy and sales or downloads of pirated software. Data about the piracy is collected from software companies, industry representatives and other public information sources.

In 2012, intellectual property officials and trademark attorneys seized over 185,000 pirated DVDs, CDs and books in Jordan. 467 IP violations were sent to the court system, with 55 cases involving the sale of pirated Microsoft programs.

Authorities stated that most of the pirated software in Jordan is smuggled into the country from Syria. Due to the ongoing conflict in Syria in 2012, the rate of pirated software being smuggled into Jordan dropped by 70 percent.

(Additional counterfeit goods statistics.)

Source:  Mohammad Ghazal, “Pirated software smuggling from Syria declined in 2012,” Jordan Times, January 29, 2013.

In a 2012 investigation conducted by Microsoft, the company purchased 169 PCs from retail stores in China. Every single PC purchased was installed with pirated Windows software. In addition, 91 percent of the computers were installed with malware or other types of security vulnerabilities.

Source:  Michael Kan, “Microsoft: Most PCs running pirated Windows in China have security issues,” Computerworld, December 13, 2012.

Computer Software Maker Adobe reported to the media that there were 55 million pirated activations of its popular photo-editing software Photoshop in 2012.  The head of its anti-piracy unit also stated that the company tracked up to 6,000 illegal activations per day of pirated copies of Photoshop that were 7 years old.

(Software Piracy Rate by Country)

Source:  David Kravets, “Hollywood’s Total Piracy Awareness Program Set for January Launch,” Wired, December 6, 2012.


According to media reports, a pirated copy of Microsoft Office Software is available for purchase on the streets of Bangkok, Thailand for about $9.70 (300 Thai Baht). A legitimate version of Microsoft Office would cost $200.

Software piracy in Thailand is estimated to cause losses of $852 Million a year.

(Software piracy losses by country.)

Source:  Patrick Winn, “Running bootleg software in Asia? Beware U.S. lawsuits,” Global Post, October 23, 2012.

The Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines stated that the software piracy rate in the Philippines was 70 percent in 2011. Between 2008 to 2010, the rate of software piracy in the country was 69 percent.

(Click to see all software losses by country)

Source:  Matikas Santos, “Government intensifies campaign against software piracy,” Inquirer, August17, 2012.

In a May 2012 report, search engine company Google reported that it takes down over 1 million links to websites selling counterfeit goods and pirated materials a month. The 250,000 links taken down in an individual week in 2012 is more than the total number of links taken down in 2009.

The report showed that Microsoft had the most links taken down by Google to enforce their copyrights, with 520,289 links to sites selling pirated software being taken down in the past month.

Source:  Jeff John Roberts, “Google takes down 1.2 million search links a month over piracy, copyright issues,” Gigaom, May 24, 2012.

The Business Software Alliance (BSA) reported in its Global Software Piracy Study that $63 Billion was lost to pirated software around the world in 2011.The amount lost to software piracy in 2011 was higher than the $58 Billion reported in 2010.

Losses in the United States due to software piracy was $9.7 Billion and the countries of the European Union lost $14 Billion.

Unless noted, all software piracy figures for individual countries was taken from the Business Software Alliance.

Click here to see the latest losses to piracy by country.

Source:  Business Software Alliance, “2011 BSA Global Software Piracy Study,” May 2012.

Up to 90 percent of all digital content provided to users on the Internet in Vietnam is pirated. The content includes music, movies, software and mobile phone apps.

Source:  Vuong Long, “Ignoring digital copyright, Vietnamese openly use stolen products,” VietNam Net, April 11, 2012.

According to the United States Ambassador to China, sales of legitimate software is higher in Vietnam than in China, despite China having over 15 times the population of China. Software piracy is believed to be the cause for the low level of sales in China, with an estimated 78 percent of all software installed on PCs in the country being pirated copies.

Source: Owen Fletcher,”Chinese Government Can’t Kick the Pirated Software Habit,” Wall Street Journal, China Real Time Report, December 13, 2011.

A report published by the United States Department of Justice stated that $2.6 Billion in Federal, state and local taxes are lost due to movie, music, software and video game piracy each year. The pirated materials also causes the loss of 373,375 jobs within the country.

Source: Jason Ryan, “Cyber Monday: Buyer Beware Counterfeit Goods,” ABC News, The Blotter, November 28, 2011.