The Business Software Alliance (BSA), striking
out against illegal trafficking in software on the Internet, filed a lawsuit
against 25 individuals accused of participating in the “warez4cable” IRC
channel, an Internet chat forum allegedly used to traffic in pirated software.
This is the first lawsuit ever filed against individuals for allegedly
pirating software in an IRC channel, the BSA said.
Last week, under the supervision of U.S. marshals, BSA said it carried out
unannounced inspections of computer equipment at residences in Sacramento and
Downey, CA, and in Troy and West Bloomfield, MI, seizing five computers.
Under U.S. law, all 25 defendants named in the lawsuit are potentially liable
for damages up to $100,000 per copyrighted work infringed.
“Because of the increased access to high-speed connections, piracy in IRC
channels is fast becoming one of the most popular ways to traffic in illegal
software on the Internet,” said Bob Kruger, vice president of enforcement for
BSA. “That is why BSA is taking immediate action against this aggressive form
The lawsuit results from months of investigation by BSA’s Online
By using a special subpoena procedure created by the
Digital Millennium Copyright Act enacted by Congress in 1998, BSA said it was
able to identify the individuals named in the suit and take legal action.
“This lawsuit is part of BSA’s on-going campaign to keep the Internet from
becoming a safe haven for the conduct of software piracy,” said Kruger.
BSA educates computer users on software copyright, advocates public policy,
expands trade opportunities and fights software piracy.
Adobe, Apple, Attachmate, Autodesk, Bentley Systems, Corel Corporation, Lotus
Development, Macromedia, Microsoft, Network Associates, Novell, Symantec and