Engineering company hit by anti-piracy raid

The Kuwait Ministry of Information’s IPR team has been in action against Kuwaiti software pirates, raiding an engineering firm in Kuwait City earlier this month. The raid uncovered ten PCs running unlicensed copies of software from Norton, Microsoft, Abode and Autodesk.

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By  Mark Sutton Published  October 30, 2001

The Kuwait Ministry of Information’s Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) team has been in action against Kuwaiti software pirates, raiding an engineering firm in Kuwait City earlier this month. The team, which was set up specifically to fight copyright infringement, uncovered ten PCs running unlicensed copies of software from Norton, Microsoft, Abode and Autodesk.

In a clear message to companies in Kuwait, the case has been transferred to the Kuwait prosecutor for further legal action, despite the owner of the company’s request to settle the matter out of court. Authorities are sending a clear message that piracy will not be tolerated.

“Copying software without the maker’s approval and using unlicensed programs on your computer are against the law, and we will be conducting more action against perpetrators,” commented Sheikha Rasha Naif Al-Sabah, director of the IPR department at the Kuwaiti Ministry of Information. “We have to let people know that they cannot abuse the law in this manner and that they should pay for software just as they pay for other products and commodities. The software industry is one of the fastest growing in the world, it employs millions worldwide, including in Kuwait and none of them should be denied their rightful revenue.”

The raid took place with the Kuwaiti Police, to enforce intellectual property law, which is increasingly becoming an issue in the state. The Minister of Information, His Excellence Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahd Al-Sabah specifically created the IPR to deal with copyright problems.

“The IT industry in Kuwait is vibrant and full of promise”, added Sheikha Rasha, “The Kuwaiti people are always up to adopting new technologies and developing new software for their market, thus, we have to make sure that local developers and legal software resellers who have invested in these products are not hurt by the trade in counterfeits."

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