The Recent History of The Federation Against Software Theft | FAST

The Recent History of The Federation Against Software Theft



  • FAST Intervenes in the application to appeal to the Supreme Court by SAS Institute. The appeal raises issues of major importance to the UK and the wider European software industry. Those issues concern the scope of copyright protection for computer software and manuals, together with the scope of what a licensee may do with licensed software for the purposes of developing other software products, whether competing or otherwise. 
  • FAST influences Government after the Hargreaves Review to carve out software per se from new copyright exemptions designed for content in compliance with European law & works to reduce the liability of those supplying Digital Content under the Consumer Rights Bill so that traders risk for damage to devices is treated as fair.
  • Each FLAG meeting is hosted in the House of Lords in the Palace of Westminster.
  • FAST take a position on Second Hand Software
  • FAST appoints a new Board Director – Richard Atkinson


  • New online enforcement campaign ‘‘ Stay Legal’ viral campaign launched through YouTube, Twitter and Facebook.
  • £48,000.00 of software purchased by a Scottish employment agency as a result of a whistle-blower’s report.
  • £70,000.00 of software purchased by a Scottish council as a result of a whistle-blower’s report.
  • Alex Hilton joins the Federation as the new Chief Executive.
  • The Federation held an event at the House of Commons called ‘IP for Growth’.  Hosted by Fiona Bruce MP presentations were given by Charles Arthur of the Guardian, Pete Wishart MP and His Honour Judge Colin Birss QC.


  • The Cloud Industry Forum (CIF) establishes a sub group to look at Cloud Computing Legal Issues to provide clarity, and to work towards providing a conducive legal framework to support the work of CIF.
  • Software – Stay Legal launched in London and the South East and the West Midlands. Federation Members showed Trading Standards Officers how to identify counterfeit software.
  • The Federation and the American organisation the Software and Information Industries Association (SIIA) joined forces against software theft in the UK, Europe and the USAS. A formal alliance was formed between the two organisations which aims to expand the reach of both organisations in the fight against software theft.


  • Software – Stay Legal campaign which was launched in the North East of England saw FAST members training Trading Standards Officers and law enforcement on how to identify counterfeit software, highlighting the cost in jobs of piracy to the community.
  • The FAST Legal Advisory Group (FLAG) held an event with industry experts speaking on internet piracy, cloud computing law and copyright law.
  • FAST announced its affiliation with Brand-i, a website which helps shoppers differentiate legitimate product from counterfeit.
  • FAST research revealed that 2/3 of British workers were unaware of the law protecting whistleblowers in the workplace.


  • Research carried out by the Software Industry Research Board (SIRB) revealed that 98% of businesses questioned were failing to utilise Software Asset Management (SAM)
  • The Digital Economy Bill passed its third reading in Parliament receiving Royal Assent in the spring.
  • A £13,000.00 settlement was negotiated by FAST on behalf of software vendor member Esker from an NHS Trust hospital in Sheffield when they were found to be using the vendor’s software without sufficient licences.
  • Anti-piracy raid conducted by FAST and Trading Standards in Swansea who were tackling corporate software copyright offences.
  • A software pirate selling software via Gumtree was taken down by FAST and Swansea Trading Standards Officers.


  • 79% of technology aware business leaders polled in recent research by The Federation thought that businesses would try and save costs by not being correctly licensed in the current economic climate
  • The first UK Software Management and Licencing Conference was held by the Software Industry Research Board (SIRB). The conference targeted the commercial and technical challenges of effectively managing software.
  • Whistleblower campaign targeted illegal corporate software users.
  • Inauguration of the Cloud Industry Forum (CIF) which was formed to develop a Code of Practice for the industry.
  • Digital Economy Bill announced.


  • Trading Standards Officers exercised their new powers under s107A of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act by inspecting businesses in Wales.
  • The Federation launched the Software Industry Research Board (SIRB) to carry out research on behalf of the industry into end user perceptions and attitudes towards licensing practices, software acquisition and related areas.
  • The Federation launched a software compliance awareness programme to advise local businesses on software use with pilot inspections in conjunction with Cardiff Trading Standards.
  • FAST joins forces with Investors in Software (IiS) to provide a unified message to end users on professional software asset management and licence management with support of all tier one vendors.


  • After 13 years of campaigning s107A of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 came into force in April 2007.
  • ISO/IEC 19770-1 SAM: Are You Ready? Self Assessment Engine (SAE) was launched. This self assessment tool jointly owned by ISO and IiS was brought to market in June 2007.
  • Operation Tracker; file sharer ordered by the Court to pay costs and damages amounting to £3500 in the first action arising from Operation Tracker.
  • John Lovelock appointed Chief Executive on the retirement of Geoff Webster.
  • Federation embarks on ground breaking project with Trading Standards cold calling on software resellers using their powers under the Trade Marks Act 1994.