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Thai firms face software charges over compliance breach

Posted by Chris Luijten on April 17, 2020

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Thai firms face software charges over compliance breach

Three Thai processed-food exporters face prosecution in the US for using pirated software in their production processes.

Arkansas attorney general Dustin McDaniel informed Kullanee Issadisai, acting Intellectual Property Department director general, that the manufacturers were accused of violating the US Unfair Competition Act.

The law which covers Washington, Louisiana, and Massachusetts targets manufacturers who sell products in these states. It's main purpose is to stop them using pirated or unlicensed software to manufacture, distribute, or market their products.

Both competing manufacturers and the attorney general of the state in which the breach is committed are permitted to commence civil proceedings against those who do not comply with the law. Organizations that breach this law face an export ban in the corresponding state.

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Historic software piracy

In 2012, Narong Seafood, a Thai frozen food exporter, was prosecuted under this law in Massachusetts. It was alleged that the company was using pirated software to sell and deliver products in the state, without paying the appropriate licensing fees.

Microsoft reported the company’s illegal use of its copyrighted software to the Massachusetts attorney general’s office after wrapping up its own suit against the business. The company agreed to pay $10,000 to resolve the allegations and pledged to no longer use unlicensed software in connection with the production of goods entering Massachusetts.

Ms Kullanaee warned Thai exporters to pay attention to this law and stop using pirated software in their workplaces and factories.

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