Citrin Cooperman, the 28th largest accounting firm in the country, was just fined $385,000 for having illegal copies of Adobe, Corel, Microsoft, and Symantec software installed on its computers. “As part of the settlement agreement, the company agreed to delete all unlicensed copies of software from its computers, acquire any licenses necessary to become compliant, and commit to implementing stronger software asset management (SAM) practices,” the Business Software Alliance, which polices pirated enterprise software, said in a press release.
BSA said it became aware of the piracy thanks to a tip submitted through its website, nopiracy.org, which gives out rewards for tips that lead to a monetary settlement. The tipster could receive up to $20,000 in this case.
Citrin claims it had no idea the software was pirated. “Our firm has grown significantly in the last decade. We have always felt we were fully in compliance and had no idea there was any unlicensed software on our computers,” managing partner Joel Cooperman said in a statement. Must have been that rogue IT department!
“When BSA asked us to check, we launched an investigation,” Mr. Cooperman said. “Upon learning there was unlicensed software, we immediately contacted BSA and corrected it. We are happy to say that in addition to ensuring all of our software products are fully and properly licensed, BSA has helped us safeguard our IT systems from serious risks such as malware and viruses that pirated software often brings.”
Citrin Cooperman is the fourth-largest accounting firm headquartered in New York, excluding the “Big Four” firms. In 2010 it had revenues of $102 million, enough to buy 113,333 copies of Microsoft Office Professional 2010.