Journal of Management Information Systems

Volume 20 Number 1 2003 pp. 153-177

Software Piracy in the Workplace: A Model and Empirical Test

Peace, A Graham, Galletta, Dennis F, and Thong, James Y L

ABSTRACT: Theft of software and other intellectual property has become one of the most visible problems in computing today. This paper details the development and empirical validation of a model of software piracy by individuals in the workplace. The model was developed from the results of prior research into software piracy, and the reference disciplines of the theory of planned behavior, expected utility theory, and deterrence theory. A survey of 201 respondents was used to test the model. The results indicate that individual attitudes, subjective norms, and perceived behavioral control are significant precursors to the intention to illegally copy software. In addition, punishment severity, punishment certainty, and software cost have direct effects on the individual's attitude toward software piracy, whereas punishment certainty has a significant effect on perceived behavioral control. Consequently, strategies to reduce software piracy should focus on these factors. The results add to a growing stream of information systems research into illegal software copying behavior and have significant implications for organizations and industry groups aiming to reduce software piracy. [ABSTRACT FROM PUBLISHER] Copyright of Journal of Management Information Systems is the property of M.E. Sharpe Inc. and its content may not be copied or emailed to multiple sites or posted to a listserv without the copyright holder's express written permission. However, users may print, download, or email articles for individual use. This abstract may be abridged. No warranty is given about the accuracy of the copy. Users should refer to the original published version of the material for the full abstract. (Copyright applies to all Abstracts.)

Key words and phrases: computer ethics, deterrence theory, expected utility theory, software piracy, theory of planned behavior