Software Copyright In India

What is meant by software copyright?

In addition to software patents, copyright protection can also be used to protect the Intellectual Property Rights associated with the software. Essentially, copyright for software is employed by software companies to reduce and prevent unauthorized copying of the software, which is also referred to as software piracy or software infringement. In case of software offered under free and open source licenses, software owners depend upon the copyright law to enforce their legal rights.

Overview of Indian Copyright Laws for Software Protection

In accordance with Indian copyright laws, computer software can be protected as literary works, wherein a “computer program” is defined as a set of statements or instructions to be used directly or indirectly in a computer in order to bring about a certain result.

Software Copyright In India

Effectively, copyright protection for computer programs prohibits unauthorised copying and infringement of the computer program, including the structure and the design of the computer program.

In addition to the source code, additional aspects of the computer program and the software can be protected by filing appropriate copyrights for the graphics, sounds, and appearance of a computer program. Consequently, by filing multiple copyright applications to protect different aspects of the software / computer program, legal proceedings for intellectual property infringement can be initiated and IP rights can be enforced even if the source code of the software is not copied by the offending party / infringer.

In addition, it is also advisable to protect future modifications and improvements of the software and the computer program by way of multiple copyrights and patent applications, which can provide strong protection of various technical features and different aspects of the software.

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