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Free open days on software licensing

The government is running a series of free events to help IT leaders understand the issues of managing intellectual property and cut the use of pirated software in their organisation.

The monthly courses, targeted at small and medium-sized enterprises and start-up companies, offer a broad overview of intellectual property, covering patents, trademarks and copyrights.

"The use of software in the workplace is integral to business operations, especially SMEs, and firms need to ensure that they have measures in place to ensure they are using legitimate software," said Miles Rees, business development manager at the UK Intellectual Property Office, which provides advice at the event.

"We do not only provide information on the risks of using pirated software, but also advice on strategies to prevent its use, and if necessary referrals for further advice to agencies like the Federation Against Software Theft."

One-to-one consultations are provided to give guidance on specific issues, such as the legal ramifications of using pirated software.

According to the Business Software Alliance, responsibilities such as managing software licensing are designated on an ad hoc basis and more education is needed to provide staff in this position with the skills to carry out their job.

More information: www.businessadviceday.gov.uk

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