A Guide to Identify and Avoid Counterfeit Software

Did you know that counterfeit software can compromise the cybersecurity of individual consumers, enterprises and sometimes even nations? The resultant cost is both time and money! Adobe works with several organizations around the world to avert pirated and counterfeit software. These organizations act as industry watchdogs, create legislation to protect software manufacturers, provide tools to identify unlicensed software, and offer useful information to help organizations stay compliant.

Counterfeit software can be very difficult to identify as unauthorized copies are often designed intelligently and emulate the legitimate product so closely that only a trained eye can spot the difference. Following are few quick tips on how to determine that you are buying genuine software:

Software priced well below the market price is usually counterfeit. Avoid buying software that costs lower than the market price.
Counterfeit sellers commonly target buyers through email marketing. People receive messages about low cost software. These messages provide a link to a site where a buyer can buy the copied software. Buyers can be victimized of credit card theft when they provide information vital through on such sites.
When shopping online, make sure the website is legitimate. Avoid auction peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing sites when buying software online. There are high possibilities of getting duped into buying Counterfeit software on such sites.
Original software enables you to get regular updates. Copied software will not allow you to make these update.
Certificate of Authenticity is the best way to distinguish between original and counterfeit when purchasing boxed software. COA is a sticker or a label that is attached to the retail packaging for boxed software.
Another way of identifying counterfeit while purchasing boxed software is through product key sticker. Product key stickers are numeric and bar codes that come only with genuine products.
When viewing the packaging of software, simple things like spelling errors, blurry text and images, or poor print quality can help one identify counterfeit. An incorrect logo and photo that doesn’t correspond to the product being purchased is a huge clue of it not being genuine.
The holograms on the DVDs are yet another way of determining the legitimacy of the software product one is purchasing.
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