One of the most striking findings in the global survey data we are releasing this week is the fact that 42 percent of the people who use paid cloud services for business say they share their log-in credentials inside their organizations. This points to a worrisome new avenue for software license abuse, and it is the latest sign that piracy is evolving in the cloud era, rather than dying out.
Let me stress: Credential-sharing within organizations does not always amount to pirating cloud services. In some cases, organizations may hold licenses that allow users to share accounts. In fact, many cloud service providers charge for their services not by “seat” but by the volume of computing resources consumed, making the path users take to access those resources less important.
But it is worth noting that 56 percent of those who use paid cloud services for business believe it is wrong to share employer-provided log-in credentials for those accounts with other people in their organizations. (That includes many of the very same people who are doing it.) And in many cases, depending on the terms of their service agreements, they would be right: Sharing credentials would in fact constitute license abuse.