Thai authorities have raided 110 companies for the use of unlicensed software worth over Bt190 million in the first half of 2017.
Economic Crime Suppression (ECD) police said the companies were of all sizes, and that unlicenced software was found on about 1,380 computers on premises in Bangkok and provinces nationwide, including Chiang Mai, Lamphun, Prachin Buri, Samut Sakhon, Songkha and Phuket.
The raids covered companies in industries including car-part manufacturing, design, services, building and construction, distribution and entertainment, and the unlicensed software mostly found included products from Microsoft, Autodesk and ThaiSoftware. Police said they continued to receive information about the use of unlicensed software and were diligently working with software copyright holders to seek more evidence before raids.
In 2016, the proportion of unlicensed software being used, installed and run in businesses in Thailand was estimated at 69 per cent – well above the Asian average rate of 61 per cent, according to the IDC-BSA survey.
In addition to the police crackdown, several government agencies and private-sector stakeholders are campaigning to make corporate end-users aware of the risks posed by unlicensed software, especially cyber-security risks.
Pol Colonel Vinai Wongbubpa, deputy commander of the ECD, said technology powered by software underpinned every aspect of business.
Vinai said that to assist Thailand in achieving its objective of digital economy growth, the ECD encouraged corporate users to check their software assets to ensure only licensed software was installed and run on their networks.
Offenders may be charged with violating the copyright law and could also face civil cases filed by the copyright owners.