How to Protect Your eBooks and Software from Being Stolen!
There are many systems that can lock your software or document, allowing you to control access to that
file. But the problem arises with assuming that this will stop all theft? A well thought out, thorough
protection system can deter theft, but it cannot stop it 100%.
An "unbreakable" protection system simply does not, and will never exist. If someone really wants your
information, they can get it, even if it takes years of work.
So What's the Point? Why Use Any Protection at All?
There is no 100% security guarantee in anything, but that's no reason to totally ignore protecting your
intellectual property -- A thief can easily kick in your front door and rob your house, but you still
lock the door right? Locking the door is not 100% effective security, but we still do it. Why? Because
locking the door deters most potential theft and those who are more determined will have to work a bit to get in.
Who Should Use Protection?
The big question here is, How valuable is your information to you? Sensitive, proprietary or
private information demands some sort of protection, otherwise transmitting over the net is not an option.
If your information is not free, then it's obviously of some importance. So, how much damage would it
do to you if it were made freely available? What type of impact would it have on your sales and could
you (or would you) absorb that without thinking twice?
Is a $14 Ebook worth paying for another service to protect it? Probably not, but it depends on the
situation and target market. What about a $2,000 report? Does the price change the perspective?
Business protect their property. If you believe your information or software to be of a unique or
proprietary nature, you should protect that information using some means, no matter how small.
Companies like Microsoft lose hundreds of millions of dollars due to software theft and fraud, yet they
continue to implement protection measures in their software. I would guess that without any protection
whatsoever the losses would be in the billions.
What Should You Expect?
Like I said, there is no 100% way to prevent every possible incident, but you can make it very
difficult and less likely to happen. At best what you should hope is to provide just enough security
to close obvious security flaws and discourage would-be thieves. But not so much security that it
discourages honest users and customers.
Here are some common protection schemes:
No Protection: Just distribute your information and hope for the best.
Pros: No special process to access file which means less support issues.
Cons: File can be passed around,
copied, distributed and/or sold without authorization from the owner. Can't prevent access after chargeback or refund.
General Password Protection: Simply requiring a predetermined password to install or register the file.
Pros: Simple for customer or end user.
Cons: File and password can be
passed around, copied, distributed and/or sold without authorization from the owner. Can't prevent access
after chargeback or refund.
PC Unique Password Protection: Generates a unique password based on the User's machine.
Pros: Can't pass around the file
since it is basically locked to one machine.
Cons: Requires an extra step for
registration; Customer cannot move file to another PC; If their PC crashes they will need another unique
password; Can't prevent access after chargeback or refund.