The Business Software Alliance (BSA) has doubled the maximum reward offered to whistle-blowers that shop illegal software users to £20,000.
The anti-piracy body has also rolled out a new online reporting page, aimed at making it easier for people to report suspected users of illegal software.
To coincide with these new whistle-blowing initiatives, the BSA has also embarked on an education campaign in Nottingham to teach businesses in the area about software licence misuse.
The campaign is the latest in a long line of regional anti-piracy and licence misuse drives the BSA has undertaken.
Julian Swan, director of compliance marketing for EMEA at the BSA, said the Nottingham campaign will emphasise the risks involved with using unlicensed software.
"More than one in four pieces of software in the UK is illegal, and over the past two years, the cost to UK businesses of using unlicensed software doubled to more than £2m as a result of legal action," explained Swan.
"This figure includes settlements and the cost of acquiring new software licences, [but] the real cost to businesses would also take into account other expenses, such as the impact on cashflow, damages to companies' reputations and operational downtime."
The campaign will also encourage Nottingham-based businesses to regularly review their software licence requirements and blow the whistle on anyone they suspect may be under-licensed.
"Although many businesses do the right thing when it comes to software management, others – either through ignorance, neglect or financial corner-cutting – persist in using illegal software," added Swan.
"This campaign sends a strong message that this will not be tolerated and companies that continue to avoid the legal route will be subject to action and investigation from the BSA."
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