Adobe putting software piracy in the spotlight

With the launch of a new anti-piracy campaign in the UAE, led by the Ministry of Economy, Channel speaks to Naser Samaenah, regional license compliance manager, Adobe Middle East & North Africa

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Adobe putting software piracy in the spotlight The campaign aims to raise awareness of resellers of the penalties for software piracy, says Samaenah.
By  Mark Sutton Published  April 20, 2011

With the launch of a new anti-piracy campaign in the UAE, led by the Ministry of Economy, Channel speaks to Naser Samaenah, regional license compliance manager, Adobe Middle East & North Africa.


CME: Is the UAE IPR law, and enforcement of it, strong enough?

NS: The UAE has the strongest IPR law in the region, and we have seen an intention from the government to continuously work to reduce the piracy rate in the region – [piracy] not only effects our customers, it also effects the national economy, employment and results in financial losses for the country. A study by IDC showed that by reducing the piracy rate by 10%, the UAE would stand to gain $425m in new economic activity, 841 jobs in the IT sector and $17m in additional tax revenue over the course of four years.

CME: What is Adobe doing to help customers be compliant?

NS: We work continuously with our customers to validate their software  and to spread awareness to enable them to identify pirated software. Our main concern now is to educate our customers about the value of using software asset management (SAM), and how they can use those tools to identify the software being used within the organisation, missing licences they may need to purchase, any software that might have been installed illegally, and how to control software installation on the network in general. In surveys we have done, almost two thirds of companies lack software asset management tools to control software within their organisations.

CME: Is there enough adoption and awareness of SAM solutions?

NS: We are trying to highlight in different campaigns and direct engagement with the customers the value of using software asset management for the business in general. Some of the companies that we have approached are starting to adopt these kind of tools in order to manage their installations. We help them, from Adobe’s side to identify the licences they use, the licences they need, and what tools and policies they need to put in place to avoid the risk of pirated software.

CME: Are you pushing your channel to get into SAM solutions?

NS: We are engaging with partners who are expert in implementing software asset management tools, so we work collaboratively with those, and we introduce them to our customers in order to get the value of SAM and get experienced partners that can do this exercise for them.

CME: What is the biggest challenge in compliance at the moment?

NS: The biggest challenge that we see is the awareness and perception of piracy. We have conducted surveys, where between 65% and 90% of companies do not know what piracy is. We are trying to increase the awareness, give them more knowledge about piracy, the consequences of using illegal software and the value of genuine products.
Piracy has serious implications for the UAE as it inhibits business growth and diminishes the competitiveness of the national economy. Businesses such as Adobe consider the UAE a key growth destination mainly because of the low level of piracy in the country. It is therefore in the best interest of the UAE to remain vigilant in the fight against piracy to maintain the high level of confidence of business enterprises and investors in the country.

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