Let's face it, software can be really expensive, and with constant updates it can run into hundreds of dollars each time a new version of your favourite piece of software is released.
With this in mind, many people revert to getting a copy of the software from a friend. This shouldn't be a problem, right?
There are lots of reasons why you should pay for a legitimate copy of your favourite software or search out an alternative, cheaper or even free piece of software that will do the same job.
Using pirated software is against the law. Software companies pay their programmers to develop and market the software and will do all they can to protect their income base. There are also quite hefty fines in place should you be caught using illegally obtained software.
RISK OF VIRUS / MALWARE INFECTION.
Most software has built-in piracy protection tools such as product keys and such. While it may be easy to use key generating software to overcome this, it means that the software may have been tampered with in some way. In this tampering, malware or viruses may have been inserted into the code which can do lots of damage to your pc and may even result in you losing your precious data.
THERE ARE ALTERNATIVES.
There are many freeware alternatives to commercial software. For example, LibreOffice is a freeware alternative to the Microsoft Office suite that is very similar in looks to the Microsoft option, and will also read files created in Microsoft Office.
CHANCE OF DATA LOSS IS HIGH
A lot of software piracy takes place with backyard dealers installing software on peoples systems without giving them a valid licence or the original disks. If you use these services, you run the risk of them not caring about your precious data, and losing important files. Unfortunately, if anything goes wrong with the illegally installed software, you don't have any way of accessing Microsoft support either.
That said, if you need a particular piece of software that is a commercial product, be prepared to pay for it. Answering advertisements on Gumtree or eBay or even Facebook community buy and sell pages where software is offered bundled with a PC or sold at a very low price, may well land you in trouble.
Always buy from a reputable source and make sure you get the required documentation and CD's or DVDs the software comes on.
Why risk fines, viruses or loss of data when you can legally use a piece of software and not have to pay for it? There is freeware software out there for almost every application.
Feel free to ask if you are looking for some software to do a particular job and cannot find a freeware alternative we may be able to help!