Czech Ministry of Interior uses software without authors’ consent
Prague February 29th (PROTEXT)
Not only does the Ministry of the Interior not pay for the operation of Czech POINTs, as Czech Television informed this weekend, but it also has not paid for the operation of the Public Administration Portal for eight months.
Since 1 July 2011, representatives of the Ministry of the Interior have been avoiding negotiations with Portal vendors; they have only been making unfulfilled promises that there will be sufficient financial cover for the services provided.
After more than a half year of such promises to the vendors, the Ministry of the Interior began to claim this February that it fully owned the Public Administration Portal, including the software, copyright and databases. This in spite of the fact that the Ministry of the Interior itself had ordered a legal opinion from a renowned law firm in 2007, which had confirmed all of the vendors´
rights and had been the basis on which the Ministry of the Interior had paid licence fees, taken deliveries of the vendors´ services and paid for them until June 2011.
After the vendors´ unsuccessful attempts at settling the dispute with the Ministry of the Interior amicably, one of the vendors - EBE - included a statement informing about the Ministry of the Interior´s illegal use in its applications on the Public Administration Portal on 27 February 2012. This is a procedure commonly used in all illegally used software solutions.
In addition, EBE has today (29 February 2012) called upon the Business Software Alliance (BSA) to investigate the matter.
As of now, it can be proved that the Ministry of the Interior has been making unauthorized use of IBM´s and EBE´s software, licences and rights for the purposes of the Public Administration Portal Information section project and has not paid for them since 1 July 2011.
There are also reasons to believe that the Ministry of the Interior has been making unauthorized use of Microsoft´s software, licences and rights in the same way within the Public Administration Portal Transactions section, having not paid for them probably since 1 January 2011.
The Public Administration Portal has been providing citizens with information about authorities, their competences, activities and agendas since 2003. The public can use this solution to obtain information on where they can get a passport, where and how they can apply for social benefits, what to do when they change their domicile, where they can obtain children´s allowance, what they need to found a company, and much more. Today, the Public Administration Portal has about 2 million pages and is used by approximately 15,000 users every day (more than 30 million users since 2003).
European Business Enterprise, a.s. (EBE)
Phone: 323 601 531
Fax: 323 602 025
EBE is an IBM Business Partner and a Microsoft Silver Independent Software Vendor.
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