Harris sued Pratibha Syntex in 2013 on the grounds that it did not pay licensing fees for software it relied on for its business, including products manufactured by Adobe, Microsoft, and others, giving the company a significant cost advantage in the low-margin business of apparel manufacturing, shipment and sales.
Harris alleged that Pratibha Syntex gained an unfair competitive advantage over America-based companies by using pirated software in the production of clothing imported and sold in California.
Other terms of the settlement prohibit Pratibha Syntex from using unlicensed software or reproducing any part of a copyrighted software program without the permission of the legitimate copyright holder, and further require the company to perform four complete audits of the software on their computers and fix any violations within 45 days, a press release said. In addition, Pratibha Syntex must draft an information technology policy statement regarding the use of licensed software and distribute this policy to all employees, it said. In her complaint Harris alleged that Pratibha Syntex obtained an unfair advantage because they were able to redirect money saved by using pirated software to hire employees and invest in research and development efforts.