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  • Sakshar Law Associates

Software Piracy and Intellectual Property - An Understanding

Updated: Sep 24, 2022


Sakshi Shairwal

Jaya Singh

The world throughout the years has seen a quick development in Information innovation, progression in different innovations, and digitalization. This development has likewise brought about the development of crimes and unlawful digital exercises, for example, hacking and programming theft. Software organizations have been profoundly tainted by theft which isn't simply unsafe to the product designers yet, in addition, hurting the clients of this product. Innovation progression has made it simple for anybody to duplicate the projects, copy them and offer them to the market.

The utilization of PCs software has made the existence of individuals simpler and manual work has been totally changed into specialized work however maltreatment of such instruments has made significant issues, for example, theft which is a continuous issue for different nations on the planet. It is an unquestionable truth that software piracy and violations identifying with it are blasting all throughout the planet in this century because of the progression of advances and digitalization and credit ought to be given to the Internet. Because of the Internet, this issue has now become a transnational issue. Such encroachment of protected software because of the web has not just made the financial issue the proprietor/maker yet, in addition, the client of such programming.

Software Piracy –

Software Piracy is the unapproved duplicating or dispersion of protected software. This should be possible by duplicating, downloading, sharing, selling, or introducing various duplicates onto an individual or work PCs. As per Nasscom, software theft includes the utilization, proliferation, or circulation of the product without having gotten the communicated authorization of the product creator. (1)

Software piracy is essentially a demonstration done by any individual whereby he duplicates, downloads, offers, sells, or introduces a duplicate of the product without the consent of the product creator where the product creator partakes in the selective right of copyright. Fundamentally at whatever point individual buys software he simply gets a permit to utilize the product, not the copyright. In India Software programs are given copyright insurance and any individual who utilizes them without consent will submit the offense of theft on unapproved utilization of copyright materials. In any case, duplicating software for reinforcement reasons for existing isn't restricted however any demonstration which will abuse the selective privileges of the copyright holder will include the lawful arrangements against such people.

Intellectual Property –

Intellectual property is any result of the human intellect that the law shields from unapproved use by others. The ownership of intellectual property inherently creates a limited monopoly on protected property. (2) Intellectual property generally involves four classes: patent, copyright, trademark, and trade secrets. Intellectual property rights are the rights given to persons over the creations of their minds. They usually give the creator an exclusive right over the use of his/her creation for a certain period of time. (3)

India being a signatory to the TRIPs Agreement had adjusted its law so that it gives the greatest security to the intellectual property in a global norm. In India, the product is treated as a scholarly work and likewise, Copyright security has been given to the product. The current patent law isn't in any thoughtful prepared to stretch out its security to programming, consequently, programming has been given assurance under the Indian Copyright Act, 1957.

Legal Framework under Indian Copyright Act, 1957 –

Under the Indian Copyright Act, software piracy can be attempted under both civil and criminal law. The base prison term for software copyright encroachment is seven days, and the greatest prison term is three years. Legal fines range from at least 50,000 to a limit of 200,000 rupees. Sections of The IT Act, 2000 can likewise be applied dependent on the situation of piracy.

Section 13 (1) (a) of the Indian Copyright Act, 1957 (4) offer security to all types of unique works. The PC program is remembered as unique artwork of the Act and accordingly, its encroachment will draw in genuine corrective and civil actions. The 1994 amendment likewise added arrangements for severe discipline for the demonstration of encroachment of protected software programs. The Act plainly expresses that any demonstration which is finished by an unapproved individual with the product which was legitimate to be finished by the approved licensee individual will add up to the demonstration of encroachment. The Act accommodates common cures like orders, harms, and other managerial measures taken by the regulatory experts for the insurance of protected software.

Section 51 (a) (ii) of the Indian Copyright Act, 1957 (5) states that when an individual allows any spot to be utilized for communication of the protected software or other work to the general population for creating benefit this will add up to the encroachment of copyright. The expression "communication to the public” is characterized in Sec. 2(ff) of the Act (6) as hearing, appreciating, or seeing the issue of protected work however it comes up short on the risk of the Internet Service Providers as it doesn't give any express arrangements to envelop the responsibility of Service suppliers like different nations.

The Act additionally includes chiefs separately or board whose authorization was taken for the commission of the offense similarly the Act punishes both individuals and friends and furthermore the organization which gives Internet administrations. There is a different section managing the "offense" which incorporates the demonstration of utilization and furthermore abetting the utilization of encroachment of protected work. This part punishes both the client and abettor of the encroached protected work. The Act also penalizes the company in its Sec. 69(1) (7) which states that every person running, managing the affairs of the company and responsible for the affairs of the company will be punished for using or abetting the infringement of copyrighted work.

The courts in India have made different strides for the insurance of protected PC programs by breaking down the courts of the digitally advanced nations, the court has given a colossal measure of harm to the offended party against the respondent. In Microsoft Corporation v. Deepak Raval (8), the Delhi High court thought about the current realities of the case the respondent has encroached on the protected work of the offended party, for example, Microsoft office 2000, Microsoft office 9, and held that there is a desperate requirement for the security of piracy in the nation because of the developing hazard of encroachment of protected material and requested tremendous damages to be paid to the offended party by the litigant. Similar observations were also made in the case of Microsoft Corporation v. Mr. Kiran and Anr. (9). Sometimes, the court likewise conceded a directive against specialist organizations to limit from utilizing, putting away, getting, and selling transmission of protected material through their sites.

Conclusion –

In India, intellectual property law permits the replicating of protected material for reasonable use. Yet, with the advancement occurring in data innovation and with the continuous digitalization, the pirated software industry has developed to a higher expand. The reception of the worldwide norm into the public law has really reinforced the law as indicated by security to software in India. Yet, India is one of the significant center points for pirated software. However, India has a solid and hardest intellectual property law, software piracy is widespread in India. There are different purposes behind it like the absence of legitimate execution of intellectual property law, the absence of mindfulness among individuals about the intellectual property laws, the inaccessibility of the product as far as amount and estimating, and so on.

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