Tech moves fast! Stay ahead of the curve with Techopedia!
Join nearly 200,000 subscribers who receive actionable tech insights from Techopedia.
Software piracy is the stealing of legally protected software. Under copyright law, software piracy occurs when copyright protected software is copied, distributed, modified or sold. Software piracy is considered direct copyright infringement when it denies copyright holders due compensation for use of their creative works.
Software piracy penalties apply to users that illegally reproduce copyrighted works and/or users who are knowingly in possession of illegally reproduced works. Unknowingly accepting pirated software is another scenario, provided it can be proven. End users may notice red flags, which indicate pirated software, especially if the acquired digital media is encased in inconspicuous or generic containers, such as CD sleeves or unnamed disk packaging.