The commercial operation advising customers how to deal with software compliance FAST Ltd has set out a guide to help those targeted by an audit.
The number of audits has risen during the recession and recently calls have been sounded for staff to take advantage of whistle blowing legislation and grass up bosses using illegal software.
Recent research also highlighted the significant numbers of design companies that are using illegal unlicensed products.
Matt Barnes, operations director at FAST Ltd said that research had show around 60% of firms were under licensed and 40% were paying for applications they no longer used.
"With a 35 percent increase in vendor audits and one in four checks triggered by finger-pointing employees, companies' finances, and their reputations are at risk," he said.
In response FAST has launched an SOS guide for those looking to get through audits safely.
"Auditing software assets should not be an activity that businesses only undertake when required," said Julian Swan, director of compliance marketing EMEA at the Business Software Alliance, which actively pursues those caught breaking the law.