Label company System Labelling has been fined £24,800 for using unlicensed Microsoft software.
The company was caught by the Business Software Alliance after the organisation was contacted by a whistleblower.
Michala Wardell (pictured), chair of the Business Software Alliance (BSA), said such fines were more than most small businesses could afford. "The financial penalties aside, using unlicensed software can also carry multiple business risks. Companies may not have access to the same support services and patches as legal versions, for example, which can lead to downtime and exposure to viruses," she said.
A study from IDC for the BSA claimed that a 10% reduction in software piracy over the next four years could create more than 10,000 jobs and £5.4bn in new economic activity.