The recession is making more companies consider using software illegally, the Business Software Alliance fears.
The trade body claims that £6m has already been paid out by firms caught using unlicensed or pirated software this year. According to the BSA, UK companies account for £435,000 of that figure.
Of that £6m, £2.1m has been paid out across EMEA in settlement fees, while the other £4m has been spent on licensing compliance.
The BSA revealed that it is currently dealing with around 30 legal actions a day across EMEA, a situation the body said it fears it being made worse by the tough economic conditions.