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Compliance to 'Clean IT' is key to healthy growth of the Indian Automobile Industry: CII's seminar in Gurgaon
The Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) held a seminar today in Gurgaon, New Delhi to address the need for local automobile & ancillary manufacturers to be IT compliant through use of 'Clean IT'. The seminar witnessed participation from various manufacturers and businesses in and around Delhi NCR. The Indian automobile and auto-component market has been scaling up its operation at a rapid pace over the last one decade.

India is attracting global interest as an emerging export hub for automotive components, generating a growing demand for local manufacturing exporters that constitute the global supply chain. Further there is a need to demonstrate ethical business conduct requiring compliance at all levels by the local players if they intend to capture their share in the global market. 

The extensive use of IT has brought in huge changes in the business through effective integration of upstream and downstream linkages in the value chain.

There is a huge cluster of manufacturing companies located in Delhi NCR. Such initiatives will drive the growth of such auto component clusters as an important export hub for global automobile companies. As these businesses will grow deal in export of auto parts, IT will continue to play a very crucial role in their growth.

At the Seminar Dr. K. Rangarajan, Head of Center for MSME Studies at the Indian Institute of Foreign Trade (IIFT) emphasized “With expected market size of USD 145 Bn by 2016, Indian Auto industry is all set to reaffirm its goliath position in global market. Where the domestic players have such a huge market to satisfy, they also have an increased competition pressure from their global counterparts many of whom come with exceptional best practices. Given the increasing dependence of Automotive manufacturing sector on IT systems, use of genuine software and hardware will become a critical factor to recon for competitiveness. The future concept of “Connected Car” will heighten the usage and monitoring of genuine IT across the chain by all partners. As the piracy rates of software in India is less than some of the countries competing for the US market, there lies an opportunity for the Indian exporters to move towards early compliance”.

At the seminar, Gouri Thounaojam, BSA|The Software Alliance said, "Issues around productivity and maintenance costs are major challenges for enterprises. Use of unlicensed software also exposes an enterprise's network to malware and viruses. Pirated software is more vulnerable to cyber-attacks as it often not supported with critical security patches and updates. Using licensed software is the crucial first step towards addressing the menace of cyber threats."

To facilitate that, BSA has developed a unique industry-supported portal- Verafirm that offers SMBs an online tool that allows them to manage their own software, demonstrate the legal use of it, and connect with buyers interested in doing business with ethical companies. Verafirm provides an opportunity for registrants to visibly and publicly get in front of these trends.

There are about 120 companies enrolled on Verafirm in India re-instating the fact that enterprises are gradually understanding the need for compliance in a promising yet highly competitive global market.

Businesses shouldn't fall into the trap of thinking pirated software is "free," and should worry about online safety and security. They also need to be on the lookout for software that looks or appears to be  legitimate but isn't, perhaps because it has an uncharacteristic price, whether they buy it from a computer store, an online site, or with a PC. They also need to understand the risks of using pirated software beyond the risk of violating copyright laws and must be vigilant in running security scans.

The losses from the use of illegal IT are a lot larger than the price tag of the legitimate software it would take to replace the entire world's pirated software. While there may be costs involved in order to comply with these rules and regulations with regards to the use of legal IT, there are potential benefits for players within the value chain. Essentially, a company can look at such costs as an investment that increase productivity through cost and time savings, competitive advantages, improved security leading to financial upsides.

Registered companies can differentiate themselves in the marketplace and supply chain managers who want to maximize trust and security with their suppliers to be proactive in managing their IT. 

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