Over a quarter of all software installed on UK PCs is pirated, says the Business Software Alliance (BSA).

According to the BSA-IDC global software piracy study, the worldwide PC software piracy rate rose for the second year in a row, from 38 percent to 41 percent. The UK fell behind France, where 41 percent of all software is pirated, but 'beat' the US, where just 20 percent of all software installed on PCs is pirated.

"With more than one in four software installations categorised as illegal in the UK, we cannot afford to give up the fight against software piracy," said Alyna Cope, spokesperson for the BSA UK country committee.

"Much more needs to be done by the industry and the government to warn businesses and consumers of the risks associated with under-licensed software, from a legal, financial and operational point of view. Software piracy hurts our knowledge-based economy by weakening the very foundation on which it is built - respect for intellectual property and innovation."