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The Hard Truth About Software Licensing

Don't be guilty of unknowingly pirating software.

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This story appears in the August 2010 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

You think software is expensive? Wait until you start using it for free. The fees add up when businesses are caught using pirated or improperly licensed software. And groups such as the Business Software Alliance and the Software & Information Industry Association are on the hunt for offenders.

But many companies guilty of pirating software are not blatant pirates--they're just disorganized��. If you track your software, you can keep not only authorities at bay, but also keep from buying unneeded software and better prepare hardware for upcoming software requirements. Some ways to get in line:

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