SOLIDWORKS is the World's Favourite 3D CAD System - it's also the most illegally downloaded

Preventing Software Piracy - Dassault Systèmes

Illegal use of unlicensed software is an issue many law-abiding companies can find themselves on the wrong side of.

To ensure you remain legally compliant, appropriate measures should be taken to educate your employees on the impact of Software Piracy and secure your internal systems against the unauthorised download, installation and operation of illegally obtained computer software.

In our modern digital age, the use of unlicensed professional software can often go under the radar within an otherwise lawfully operating company and only come to light, at the point the software vendor makes contact.

Dassault Systèmes SOLIDWORKS has advanced technology and processes to track the illegal use of its software packages and takes cases of illegal software piracy very seriously.

If unlicensed software is detected within a commercial setting, the company in question will be liable for damages to Dassault Systèmes SOLIDWORKS.

These damages will usually be in the form of a commercial purchase of the relevant software packages that were found in use, through an appointed SOLIDWORKS Reseller.

If you’re on this page after being notified of a license compliance issue at your company, here’s are some details on what has triggered this and what to expect.


Dassault Systèmes have very advanced systems and processes to track the illegal use of their software. If you have been notified of a license compliance issue by their legal representatives, it means unlicensed software has been detected in connection with your company.


When the software has been detected, you will be notified of the issue by Dassault Systèmes UK & Ireland appointed Legal Representatives at CJCH Solicitors. This will usually be in the form of an email to your company but in some cases may be a letter.

Investigate & Response

You will be given the opportunity to investigate your internal systems and respond to CJCH with any findings. We recommend you take the opportunity to do this, as instances of false detections are extremely rare and, in all likelihood, there will be an unlicensed copy of SOLIDWORKS in play somewhere within the organization.


Once the merit of the case has been established, you will be further contacted by a member of the Dassault Systèmes Compliancy Mediation team. At this point, you will be informed of the scale of the issue and what regulatory purchase would be required to resolve it.

The mediator will be able to work with you to understand if a different configuration of the software may be a better fit for your company and can alter the required purchase, as long as the case value is met.

Ultimately Dassault Systèmes would rather your company get’s the most out of whatever you purchase, so this is a good opportunity to look at your current & future needs and configure accordingly.

Purchase through authorised Reseller

The final stage is to complete the purchase through an appointed and authorised SOLIDWORKS reseller, such as SOLIDX.

If you’re already a SOLIDWORKS customer, the case will be referred to your existing supplier.

If you’re a new customer to SOLIDWORKS, a supplier will be appointed to you, but you can choose from any authorised supply in the UK & Ireland, if you would like to make your own selection.

Installation & Use

At this point you can begin using the newly purchased software.

If you successfully located the unlicensed copy, it’s very important this is fully removed from all devices, to stop the same compliance process being triggered in the future.

SOLIDX can help ensure you have successfully removed the unlicensed software and replaced with the legal copies.

For more information

About software piracy or to report piracy, log on to or write to”

Get in touch

Anything you need, get us anytime on 01223 857300.

License Compliance Frequently asked questions

Question – My company has received a letter from CJCH, regarding illegal software. Is this legitimate?

Answer – Most likely, yes. In order to be 100% certain that the case is real, a SOLIDWORKS Reseller can confirm. If you’re an existing customer, you should reach out to your existing supplier. If you’re not currently a SOLIDWORKS Customer, SOLIDX can check for you.

Question – We are confident our company operates legally, should we ignore this?

Answer – No. While you may make every effort to comply with the law, unlicenced software can still find it’s way onto your systems. In our experience unlicensed software tends to originate from:

  • Rogue employees, knowingly installing cracked software without your knowledge or approval
  • Contractors using illegal software for commercial projects, connected to the company network
  • Students on placements or part time, using their own student license, or an illegally cracked copy.

Question – It’s only software, isn’t this a victimless crime?

Answer – No. Dassault Systèmes invests millions of dollars per year in updating and maintaining it’s software, to ensure that it’s paying customers can benefit from industry leading technology to power their business.

Software piracy hurts this development by diverting revenue away from the appropriate channels, that fuel this development.

Software piracy also hurts compliant companies that appropriately license their software, by allowing competition to potentially undercut them, as they are not paying for their software. This is particularly damaging in the freelance & contract engineer community.

Question – We’ve located and removed the illegal software. It that sufficient in resolving the case?

Answer – No. While locating and removing the software is the right thing to do, it does not change the fact that the software was accessed and used in the first instance. The only way to resolve a confirmed software piracy case, is by a commercial purchase of the appropriate package.

Question – How can I ensure the contractors I hire are using legal copies of SOLIDWORKS?

Answer – Purchasing SOLIDWORKS can only be done through a small number of authorised resellers and as such, there are 2 simple questions you can ask:

  • Which reseller did you purchase from?
  • Can I check with them, that you are a legal customer?
  • If you do not get satisfactory answers to these questions, maybe it’s time to reconsider.

Question – We have a student joining for a placement. Can they use their student license?

Answer – No, not for anything remotely commercial. Student copies are intended to be used only for educational purposes. Using them for commercial work has the same ramifications as using an illegally cracked copy. What’s more, all files and drawings created or even modified on a student version, will become permanently watermarked. Not exactly the professional look you want to give out to customers or suppliers.

If you have a student joining for a short period and want them to work on commercial projects, we recommend purchasing a fixed term rental license of either 3 or 12 months. Visit our Pricing Page, to see costs.

Talk to our experienced friendly team