Archive for Maj, 2011

DionWired gives SMART boost to special needs’ schools

By admin, 24 maja, 2011, No Comment

A new allocation will be made for the company’s financial year from July 2011, and the total DionWired corporate social investment budget will be allocated to SMART Technology products for special needs’ schools catering for children with a wide range of physical and intellectual disabilities.

“Until now, this technology was available mainly to schools with substantial funding,” says DionWired general manager Andrew Jackson. “We are bringing it to the children who need it most. We are committed to boosting education and, since our product range features the latest technological innovations, our partnership aligns perfectly with the DionWired brand.”

The SMART Board interactive whiteboard is a large touch-sensitive screen that works with a computer and a data projector to provide a central focal point in a classroom and allows teachers and learners to write with pens or move objects such as images with their fingers. The DionWired grant includes the SMART Board, a notebook computer, speakers, microphones, data projector, SMART Notebook collaborative learning software and training, valued at approximately R50 000 per school. SMART reseller Edit Microsystems is accredited for installation, support and teacher training.

Jackson says that the collaborative software meets specific educational needs. “Children with disabilities often benefit from the tactile experiences which interactive whiteboards provide. The tactile learner is instantly engaged by the colourful images and can directly interact with the board by manipulating letters, words, pictures and numbers. At the same time sound effects can be added to objects on the board to assist aural learners.”

All SMART Board interactive whiteboards come equipped with SMART Notebook software, which allows teachers to create and deliver interactive lessons that can be saved, shared electronically and printed. Internet access introduces educational resources through the SMART Exchange website where more than over 50 000 digital lesson activities are available in SMART Notebook, free of charge. The Internet also connects students and teachers to sites such as Google Earth and YouTube. Teachers have easy access to thousands of videos, scientific animations and other multimedia resources and can invite specialists into their classrooms via SMART Bridgit conferencing software or Skype.

According to Anand Sirkissoon, principal of RP Moodley School in KwaZulu-Natal, which received a SMART Board interactive whiteboard from DionWired earlier this year, “The SMART Board holds children’s attention and keeps them interested for longer periods. Educators have the option to appeal to one or more senses. Information can be presented visually, making language more meaningful for a child with low functional speech. Touchscreen technology enables a child with physical limitations and the partially sighted to participate in learning.”

Jane Noble of the Browns’ School in KwaZulu-Natal notes that, with the SMART Board, “Social intelligence can be nurtured through group learning and teamwork. Creative intelligence can be accessed via music, dance clips and interactive musical / dance / theatre software. Now we have an endless world of learning programmes, documentaries, DVDs, curriculum-based games – a multimedia library that can be accessed at the touch of a button.”

“A particular benefit to schools focused on special needs’ children, is teachers’ ability to ‘ plug in’ to the network of other teachers who also use SMART Board technology and may be facing similar challenges,” adds Jackson. “With SMART Bridgit conferencing software, teachers in different regions can share their experiences and assist each other to overcome obstacles.”

Corporate heads up in the Cloud?

By admin, 24 maja, 2011, No Comment

According to Gartner, the cloud services industry is poised for strong growth through to 2014, where worldwide cloud services revenue is projected to reach $148.8 billion. Despite this growth potential, Cloud Computing has a significant market reputation globally, and the same can be said for local business as highlighted though a recent MTN Business survey to ascertain what organisations in SA and broader are thinking with regards to Cloud Computing and Virtualisation services.

Although 50% of the businesses surveyed have noticed a significant increase in the uptake of or interest in, Cloud Computing across SA in last 6 months, 35% feel the trend is general uncertainty. 45% of respondents feel that trusted advice is readily available when it comes to understanding the impact and adoption strategies of Cloud, and another 45% find advice to be available, but overall are still confused based on varying industry options – which mirrors global sentiments. However, despite this local uncertainty, 55% of local respondents are already allocating IT budgets to either commence or continue Cloud and Virtualisation investments in 2011 and a quarter are seriously investigating their options this year – as they recognise the potential of this technology.

“It is encouraging to see that 45% of local businesses believe that Cloud is the next obvious step in IT Innovation and that this, along with the need to examine more cost effective operational options (35%) is driving adoption of these technologies locally,” says Angela Gahagan, managing executive of MTN Business. “It’s also optimistic to see that 60% of respondents agree that Africa has a key technology advancement opportunity with Cloud Computing uptake and although, like any new technology it will be adopted at a slow and steady pace, 65% are in the opinion that Cloud will be the technology of the future.”

Various sources outline the inhibitors to adopting cloud – with security and integration seemingly topping the list and local sentiments mirror this as when asked to rank the largest inhibitors to cloud adoption locally, vendor viability and security came out tops, with costs and resistance to change also coming through as pressing concerns.

“Cloud Computing and Virtualisation are destined to reshape an organisation’s IT infrastructure and the manner in which information resources are deployed, utilised and stored for crucial decision making and so it’s only natural that there are some reservations,” adds Gahagan. “However, it is evident that Cloud Technologies will be the most significant driver of the successful mobile workforce management, essentially a workforce in the cloud where it allows secure access to virtual private networks, employee desktops and an array of business applications.”

Cloud computing and virtualisation will continue to grow and this will see new innovative solutions come to the fore – ones that allow businesses to save costs, streamline processes and ensure productivity is achieved. Concludes Gahagan; “Deciphering the value of this new technology is difficult – especially to an already cautious business environment recovering from a global recession – but certainly MTN Business are committed to bringing this value proposition and the transparency needed around such technologies to the local market.”

South African matric students gear up for mid-year exams on MXit

By admin, 24 maja, 2011, No Comment

In February this year, QuizMax, compiled of a group of South African teachers, teamed up with MXit to help learners navigate the more challenging aspects of these subjects by offering a set of exam-level quizzes that are compliant with the National Examination Guidelines for Grade 12s.

Maths, Physical Science and Life Sciences are some of the most difficult subjects for matric learners to grasp; not only are they difficult in principle, but there are often external challenges like the availability of books or the large number of learners per class, that detract from a successful learning environment.

QuizMax supports learners by offering a suite of free mobile learning tools.

“Over 90 000 quizzes were completed by learners in March and April alone, and the numbers continue to increase.  We believe that QuizMax helps to captivate learners and makes practising model questions in these subjects more fun, especially when coupled with the fact that it’s featured on a platform that is being used by a great proportion of South Africa youth. They like technology, and they love using MXit – a win-win combination for us,” says Ian McDougall, business manager of Learning to the Max, the company that created QuizMax.

QuizMax chose to start with Maths, Physical Science and Life Sciences. “This is because of the critical value these subjects bring to, not only the future of learners, but also to the development of the South African economy as a whole,” says McDougall.

Currently Grade 12 is available, but other grades will be introduced soon.

While students, especially in rural areas, often don’t have access to learning material, over 80%* of them own a mobile phone.

“QuizMax has a real potential to assist the Department of Basic Education to encourage learners that are struggling with Science and Maths to change their perception of the subjects, and this is where we see the most value.  Our partnership with QuizMax fits into our overall vision of creating features and platforms that add real value to the lives of users, and what is more valuable than education?,” says Laura Hallam, head of MXit Cares, a division of MXit that creates platforms for social good.

Besides the more serious objective of the programme, QuizMax also aims to make learning interactive and accessible.

“Our challenge initially was deciding on how to make subjects like Maths, Physical Science and Life Sciences exciting enough for learners to want to engage with, while still being able to help the national education system achieve their mandates.  It quickly became clear that MXit should be our partner and that our format should be fun, challenging and uncompromisingly curriculum-based,” says McDougall.

Although some of the top private schools are using QuizMax, most of the activity is coming from government schools and their learners.  The highest number of quizzes completed in a recent school-based trial was by learners at Simanyene Secondary School in the Western Cape.

Comment from teachers:

John Pym, a teacher from Prestige College says: “It is a really exciting concept and I enjoyed using it in my class.”

Mercy Mxokozeli, HOD for Steve Tshwete Secondary School says: “The learners became very self-motivated, one boy just did QuizMax all the time, and improved from being a very average student to getting 79% in his final exam.”

Comments from learners:

A learner from Steve Tshwete Secondary School says:  “The people, they like using it. It is very cool.  It helped especially with the Mathematics.  It was good for my studies. Every time I do the Physics, I feel like a scientist. They must also do the Geography. Every last day, before the exam, I was just logging in and doing the quizzes. It’s like magic!”

The QuizMax platform is free to learners and allows school teachers to evaluate their learners’ progress.  Teachers can also individually track the quizzes students complete, and how they are progressing.

In order to facilitate the information outreach programme, MXit also recently integrated Wikipedia into its search offering, so that learners would not have to leave the MXit programme to research subjects while they are on the platform.

XON’s targets services market with network operations centre

By admin, 24 maja, 2011, No Comment

The networking centre will service customers, irrespective of their geographic location, allows for a complete overview of the clients’ technology infrastructure, project and account details and various other aspects of the account, and displays, monitors and supports them through a manned team on a permanent basis.

Anthony Laing, head of service provider networking at XON, says: “This is the culmination of XON’s efforts to pool our resources, hone in on networking skills sets and streamline our services. The XON network operations centre now enables clients both large and small to immediately plug into the networking centre with minimal infrastructure changes, minimal risk, and still drive compliance.”
The centre employs the latest networking tools and best-practice methodologies that are customised by highly skilled professionals with strong technical capabilities to suit clients’ needs.

“With the new centre we are proactively monitoring the network. We are in a position to assist with any aspect of network infrastructure management, maintenance and support. From a cost saving point of view, this set-up is a valuable investment that we make for our clients,” says Laing.

XON’s testing laboratory is open to customers to beta test their new networking environments before they go live, a value-add facility that traditionally would cost companies millions of rand to set up and maintain.

The centre allows XON’s customers to focus on their core business without having to source and employ scarce networking skills, traditionally an area where the local market falls short.

“We have created a world-class testing and network offering for our customers. There is nothing similar in the local market for local service providers, and our strategy has always been to lead the market with innovation and unique services well ahead of local trends,” says Laing. “Typically in organisations there are only one or two support engineers to service their entire environment. This creates support bottlenecks, which results in delayed resolution time, and often mission-critical systems are affected.”

XON’s data centre provides clients with high-performance redundant dual networks, remote administration and proactive management services, as well as assisting in managing its customers’ suppliers, knowing that network support is always available.

“Network managers are assigned to manage the daily operations based on solid service level agreements, which includes 24-hour support and the highest level of physical and digital security,” Laing says.
XON will continue to grow its support team into a hub of specialist networking skills to have a pool of specialised resources for each aspect of the network value chain.

The Consumer Protection Act meets the Service Level Agreement

By admin, 24 maja, 2011, No Comment

But what impact, if any, does this have on the interactions of complex businesses such as those providing information and communication technology (ICT) services? That’s a question to which Ashika Kalyan, chief marketing officer (CMO) at Business Connexion, provides a considered response.

“The short answer is that the CPA is likely to have a limited effect on such businesses in practice,” she says.

The spirit, if not letter, of the CPA is that it seeks to align various preceding laws which provide consumer redress into a comprehensive piece of legislation. The Department of Trade and Industry notes its primary purpose as the prevention of exploitation or harm to consumers by recognising and consolidating consumer rights, establishing mechanisms for the enforcement of rights, prohibiting certain conduct and placing obligations, such as for acceptable quality, on suppliers of goods or services.

Kalyan notes that services companies are expressly included under the terms of the Act. “In short, every transaction occurring within the Republic is affected as well as the marketing and supply of goods and services.”

But she makes an important distinction. “The term ‘services companies’ is very broad; carpet cleaning and gardening are examples of services which require a very simple engagement. The provision of managed ICT services, on the other hand, is a highly complex engagement.”

She believes the spirit of the law as it applies to services companies runs to promises being made but not met. That’s why ICT services companies may already be very well aligned to the requirements of the CPA.

“The differentiation is that when providing ICT services, any promises which are made are reduced to writing. The quality of service, the details of delivery and even the penalties which may be due should those promises not materialise, are all contained within the Service Level Agreement,” Kalyan explains. The SLA, she continues, contains the minutiae of every professional engagement. “It is the bible which governs all aspects of the relationship, the value to be conferred and the monies to be paid.”

And while the CPA provides for a ‘cooling off’ period in which contracts may be cancelled by a customer experiencing ‘buyer’s remorse’, Kalyan notes further than ICT services contracts are not entered into lightly.

“The sales cycle is lengthy, the contracts exhaustively detailed and the required services are often critical to support the business processes or models of the client. An immense amount of work goes into identifying, procuring, configuring and deploying enterprise ICT services; these are not simple transactions where one party can fool the other,’ she says.

The presence of such comprehensive documentation in the engagements of ICT (and other) services companies may go a long way to ensuring compliance with the CPA, but Kalyan stresses that this does not provide the proverbial ‘get out of jail free’ card.

“Naturally, the legal teams of such companies are taking cognisance of the new legislation and assessing the possibilities of exposure which may result; if necessary, amendments will be made to the way in which customers are engaged and managed to ensure compliance,” she says.

“But it remains a strong likelihood that the providers of complex services – and their clients – have, through necessity, largely complied with the CPA before it’s introduction.”

Opinion: Activity-based costing beware the pitfalls

By admin, 24 maja, 2011, No Comment

“Judging by the number of customer enquiries about it, we appear to be in the middle of another wave of enthusiasm for activity-based costing (ABC),” says Kevin Phillips, MD of idu Software. In theory, ABC is a powerful analytical tool for helping businesses understand exactly what makes them tick. But is the insight delivered worth the extra cost of implementation? Although our software will always support ABC as long as there are customers for it, I’m not convinced that the cost/benefit analysis shows the same results for all.

If ABC is done properly, it helps organisations identify which of their products, clients and activities are most (and least) profitable, and which costs are unnecessary. Resources can then be allocated more efficiently to boost profitable activities and eliminate unprofitable ones.

This is a great idea; much like “let’s have a baby!” is a great idea for many couples. But while there are undeniable rewards, they are not always easy to measure; and in both cases it’s a high-maintenance investment that can take a long time to deliver returns.

The first step in implementing ABC is to identify the activities of the business, which can cost six months of expensive consultancy time all on its own. You have to take your business apart to analyse exactly how it works. Then you have to make decisions about how to allocate the costs of activities to different products, services or customers.

For example, let’s say your marketing department takes a stand at a trade show. Apart from the salaries of the people involved in planning and staffing the stand, there will be invoices for the rental of space, for constructing the stand, for printing brochures or making promotional videos, and so on. How do you allocate these costs to products, services or customers? It’s not going to be easy, and at some point someone is probably going to have to make an arbitrary decision or estimate.

The same problem occurs all the way along the line. How do you allocate the costs of negotiating with suppliers? Updating databases? Training? One of the key dangers in this process is that you end up with incredibly complex systems and processes, which are expensive to administer and create yet another potential source of bottlenecks and errors.

Then there’s the sticky problem of how to sustain ABC once it’s been implemented. There’s no point at all in budgeting by activity if you don’t also keep accounts by activity: budget spend must be correlated with actual spend or the whole exercise is pointless.

But that is much easier said than done. It means every single invoice has to be allocated to an activity, and frequently to more than one activity – in which case someone has to make a decision about what proportions of the cost are allocated to each activity.

There’s also the hard fact that reality will always undermine your assumptions. Just when you’ve got a clear set of rules and definitions down, something will happen in the world that invalidates them.  Then the system will throw up all sorts of exceptions and you’ll have to spend more time explaining them.

The bottom line is: If you implement activity-based costing, will it save you as much as you’re spending? For some organisations it’s been an undoubted success; but just as with babies, it might not be for everyone.

New laws could see companies in hot water over ineffetive document destruction practises

By admin, 24 maja, 2011, No Comment

According to Gianmarco Lorenzi, CEO of Cleardata, the POPI stipulates that the destruction or deletion of a record of personal information must be done in a manner that prevents its reconstruction in an intelligible form. Failure to comply with this legislation means a breach of an organisation’s legal obligations.

He says that shredding is still the most effective way for businesses to safeguard against document reconstitution. “Potential consequences of not destroying documents properly include, among others, identity theft, leaking of trade secrets to competitors and employees, legal ramifications and financial losses.”

Lorenzi highlights that non-compliance of rural branches of companies are of particular concern, as the availability of compliant destruction services in these areas is often either lacking or non-existent.

He says unfortunately, most companies will spend thousands of rands protecting their electronic data through the use of firewalls and high-tech information security, but will let their paper leave the building in the hands of a stranger. “Apart from the legal consequences, it simply makes good business sense to protect your ideas, business plans and budgets from being available to the prying eyes of competitors,” says Lorenzi.

He says data protection risks are faced by all industries, however, financial institutions, medical and insurance companies are most at risk, due the vast amount of personal client information they house.

However, Lorenzi says the majority of large South African companies are starting to realise the importance of responsible disposal of documentation. “This is as a result of pressure from international parent companies, increased awareness of the risks involved in failing to shred documentation properly and the recent ‘green’ movement, focusing not only on reducing carbon emissions, but also on the recycling of paper.

Lorenzi recommends businesses should ensure that they use only reputable document shredding companies that have been certified by the National Association for Information Destruction [www.naidonline.org].

Business Connexion strengthens retail competence, concludes R614-million deal

By admin, 24 maja, 2011, No Comment

With the completion of its acquisition of selected business units of UCS, Business Connexion is staking its claim as the country’s leading provider of information and communication technologies to the retail sector.

Negotiations which commenced in late 2010 are officially finalised as of this month, with the issue of new shares and the divisions becoming de facto units within Business Connexion.

According to Matthew Blewett, Group Executive: Mergers and Acquisitions at the company, this reflects the culmination of a major strategic thrust by Business Connexion. “The company has long recognised the value of ‘in house’ software intellectual property. The UCS divisions substantially enhance this value while adding further expertise through the services and solutions components of this acquisition,” he notes.

In terms of the transaction, valued at approximately R614-million and financed through the issue of 101 million new shares and R30-m cash, UCS Technology Services, UCS Solutions, CEB Maintenance and UCS businesses Accsys, are now wholly-owned by Business Connexion, which also takes a 70% stake in Destiny e-Commerce.

While Blewett says the conclusion of the deal represents the closure of an intense period of executive planning, he stresses that more work lies ahead. “The new challenge is integration of these assets and people into our existing competency centres to fully expose their value for our clients and for shareholders. The medium-to-long term success of the deal depends on our ability to retain existing clients of both organisations while also expanding the offerings to them and new clients,” he notes.

Specifically, he says a focus is being applied to ensure smooth integration. “From a strategic point of view, these assets will bolster our position in the retail sector. Operationally, considerations include integrating the business systems where appropriate, merging sales teams, activities and establishing processes which take into account the respective strengths of the now-combined organisations.”

He says Business Connexion is aware that the ultimate success of the acquisition lies in the execution of this integration. “Therefore, if anything, the real work starts now.”

What is anticipated is increased competitive value which will result from an expanded solutions portfolio; sales opportunities are likely within existing clients, while the entity has more to offer new clients, too. “There will be an element of economies of scale for our clients which will result from common processes, such as engagement and shared services, within the combined entity,” Blewett notes.

And in addition to the capabilities, he makes special mention of the substantially expanded headcount which now comprises the Business Connexion employee complement.

“Our Connective Intelligence approach is centred on the power of human capability; with these UCS businesses on board, we have more skills, more knowledge and more expertise. That enhances our ability to take information and communication technology and apply it to the advantage of our clients. As we harmonise the acquired businesses with existing operations, our goal is to enhance Connective Intelligence and our competitive advantage.”

T-Systems wins SAP Pinnacle Award 2011

By admin, 21 maja, 2011, No Comment

SAP AG, the Walldorf-based software company, has announced Deutsche Telekom subsidiary T-Systems as winner of the “2011 SAP Pinnacle Award” in the “Run SAP Partner of the Year” category in recognition of its excellent work as a partner within the global SAP ecosystem. The award is SAP’s recognition of investment in global Run SAP certifications, successful Run SAP implementation projects, consultant training, and cooperation between T Systems and SAP Active Global Support, among other achievements.

Run SAP is a system that allows ICT service providers to plan, design, run and further develop SAP applications. T-Systems trained almost 250 employees in locations such as Brazil, Malaysia, Mexico, South Africa, Germany and Slovakia in Run SAP last year, far more than required by SAP’s award criteria. T-Systems also demonstrated a range of successful Run SAP implementation projects from 2010 with companies such as Vorwerk, the electronics group Philips, automotive industry supplier Continental and the pharmaceuticals company AstraZeneca.

T-Systems is an SAP Global Support Partner

The ICT provider has also had a great deal of expertise in the SAP environment for many years. T-Systems was awarded the status of SAP Global Support Partner in early March 2011, making it one of the few companies worldwide to be a global partner of SAP in the core areas of services, support and hosting. The global SAP partnership goes beyond national and continental borders, and supports a wide variety of industries, technologies and user groups.

“The 2011 SAP Pinnacle Award” in the Run SAP Partner of the Year category is in recognition of T-Systems’ exceptional commitment and performance in continuously expanding its partnership with SAP and in contributing to the success of our customers,” said Eric Duffaut, President of Global Ecosystem and Channels at SAP.

“The Pinnacle Award is a prestigious prize and we are very pleased to receive it. It documents that we are one of the leading companies worldwide in the SAP environment,” said Dr. Ferri Abolhassan, Head of Production and member of the Board of Directors of T-Systems. Ulrich Meister, T-Systems Managing Director of Systems Integration, sees the Pinnacle Award as an additional stimulus for the future: “Receiving the Pinnacle Award in the Run SAP Partner of the Year category is a worthy recognition of our commitment as an SAP global support partner. This is an additional incentive for us to further bolster and expand our market position in the coming years with innovative products, good service and top performance.”

SAP solutions from the cloud

T-Systems is one of the few service providers to offer SAP services from the cloud that include all ICT services. This lets companies use SAP services flexibly, as they need them, and pay only for the resources they actually use. The cost is based on the number of transactions and the extent and duration of use. Capacities are adjusted to the flow of business, significantly cutting the cost of SAP operation, reducing investment risks and increasing planning reliability for the companies using the services.
T-Systems is a worldwide pioneer in this field. More than 100 companies currently purchase their SAP applications from the ICT service provider via the Internet as required.

Microsoft collaborates with WIPO and DTI for stronger IP protection

By admin, 20 maja, 2011, No Comment

Microsoft has again joined forces with the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) to highlight the benefits of using genuine software and stronger protection on IP innovation. Their most recent event, held on 26 April, spoke out about the importance of IP rights.

“Strong IP protections are central to instilling a culture of innovation, which can spur economic growth, create jobs and increase revenue for the broader industry and government organisations,” according to Microsoft.

“In addition to strengthening the economy, sound IP policies can help reduce software piracy and counterfeiting, which we know sap government resources, threaten legitimate businesses and expose consumers to the risks that come from using non-genuine software,” said Charl Everton, anti-piracy lead, Microsoft South Africa. “Software piracy and counterfeiting tend to thrive in places with weak IP protection, and this has an enormous and negative impact on the global economy.”

At the recent Convention on Reducing Software Piracy organised by the Free Market Foundation (FMF) and the Information Technology Association (ITA), and hosted by Microsoft South Africa, Everton revealed her “5 step roadmap to reducing software piracy” and placed collaboration at the heart of what is needed to decrease piracy locally. “What we need to do in South Africa is lead by example when using original products and while policies are in place, we need to play a strong role in supporting enforcement bodies to bring the culprits to justice. Cross-border cooperation and the promotion of public and private partnerships will increase capacity and awareness about counterfeit goods and IP rights”.

Microsoft’s commitment to collaboration is evident in Operation ThengaEyakho, a pilot campaign jointly led by Microsoft and the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC). Operation ThengaEyakho is focused on IPR and software specific anti-piracy messaging. The campaign is aimed at driving awareness and education amongst universities, high-schools, small businesses, the public and includes law enforcement capacity building. Mkhuseli Vimba, Director of Education and Awareness at the CIPC said, “Operation ThengaEyakho wants to encourage people to buy original, be original. This partnership with Microsoft is a step in the right direction in fighting piracy and helping these groups to better understand their intellectual property rights and those of others.”

The event, which brought together several players in the software industry including the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), the Computer Society South Africa, the Business Software Alliance (BSA), Microsoft and others, also stressed a strong correlation between economic growth and the prevalence of piracy.

DTI provided an overview of the Counterfeit Goods Act and the Copyright Act put in place to protect intellectual property, and pinpointed the challenges in enforcing these regulations due to capacity and the need for training. It was revealed that the total value of counterfeit goods seized in the last financial year amounted to over R696 million.

Microsoft South Africa can reveal that a civil case will shortly be brought against a local computer shop owner in Port Elizabeth, who has been raided on two occasions in connection with selling unlicensed and counterfeit software to unsuspecting customers. A criminal trial is also pending against the same suspect. The suspect was not only selling counterfeit software, but changing the CK numbers of company invoices. The counterfeit goods were packaged to look like genuine products and included counterfeit CDs with simulated holograms and counterfeit certificates of authenticity. “Any action that is taken against these criminals often prevents the funding of more serious crime, and while consumers don’t often realise they have illegal software – they are instrumental in bringing these criminal operations to justice” says Everton.”

According to a study commissioned by the International Chamber of Commerce in 2011, the global economic and social impacts of counterfeiting and piracy will reach US$1.7 trillion by 2015 and put 2.5 million legitimate jobs at risk each year. Conversely, the economic rewards for countries that strengthen IP protection and reduce piracy are substantial. According to an economic study by the Business Software Alliance, a reduction in the worldwide piracy rate by 10 percentage points in four years would create $142 billion in new economic activity and add nearly 500,000 new high-tech jobs around the world.

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