Clinton orders government crackdown on software pirates

WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House ordered government agencies Thursday to crack down on their own software piracy, and it directed the nation’s top trade official to press foreign governments to do the same.
The executive order signed by President Clinton is the latest move by the administration to please America’s high-tech industry, which is growing in importance as a political force in Washington.
Under the new order, federal agencies must make sure that only paid-for software is used, prepare an inventory of software on their computers and maintain record-keeping systems.
The new policy is designed to prevent government workers from making copies of office software for their personal use and prevent them from installing personal copies of their home software in the office.
The U.S. government is easily the world’s largest purchaser of computers and related equipment, buying more than $20 billion worth each year. But there are no good estimates, other than anecdotes, about how rampant piracy runs among government office