Computer Software Copyright
Like any other original work, computer software is protected by the Copyright Act. However, the software must not lead to technical effect is not a program. The software which has a technical effect will be dealt with the Patent Act. To enjoy copyright protection the software must be an original work and should be published in India and not abroad. The author of the work must be an Indian citizen or citizen of any other country who is a member of Berne Convention or UCC.
Why is it necessary?
The Act endeavours to allow author the liberty to reproduce the work and have the right to sell it. It also seeks to safeguard his economic rights. It must be noted that the author of the software has the first right on the product. However, if he is under the contract of an employer, the employer will hold all the rights regarding the software.
Section 51 talks about infringement of copyright and states that under those circumstances when a person not authorized to reproduce or benefit from the software does so, is brought into the book under Chapter XII of the act. The law is pretty harsh and is punishable with imprisonment up to 3 years and a fine of maximum Rs 2 lacs.