What is warez? - Definition from WhatIs.com
Part of the Business terms glossary:

Warez (pronounced as though spelled "wares" or possibly by some pronounced like the city of "Juarez") is a term used by software "pirates" to describe software that has been stripped of its copy-protection and made available on the Internet for downloading. People who create warez sites sometimes call them "warez sitez" and use "z" in other pluralizations.

According to the International Planning & Research Corporation, warez Web sites cost software vendors $11.8 billion in 2001. The most popular downloads at warez sites include applications from major vendors such as Microsoft, Symantec, Macromedia, and Adobe Systems. The vendors have joined forces with the Business Software Alliance (BSA) to successfully close a loophole in Internet law that allowed warez distributors to avoid legal prosecution as long as they didn't profit monetarily from their distributions. (Use of warez software is also illegal and may result in a jail sentence.)

Warez should not be confused with shareware or freeware software applications, which are legal and may be freely copied and distributed.

This was last updated in September 2005
Contributor(s): Mike Siekkinen
Posted by: Margaret Rouse

Related Terms


  • Alphabet, Inc.

    - Alphabet, Inc. is a conglomerate founded by Google to serve as its parent company; Google will continue to exist as a fully-owned subsidiary of Alphabet, as will Calico, Google Ventures, Google Cap... (WhatIs.com)

  • outcome economy

    - Outcome economy describes an economy based on the marketing, pricing and selling of the results provided by goods and services rather than their face value. (SearchCIO.com)

  • reverse mentoring

    - Championed by former GE CEO Jack Welch, reverse mentoring flip-flops the typical mentoring relationship, with a younger employee acting as the mentor. (SearchCIO.com)


  • Business terms

    - Terms related to business, including definitions about project management and words and phrases about human resources, finance and vertical industries.

  • Internet applications

    - This WhatIs.com glossary contains terms related to Internet applications, including definitions about Software as a Service (SaaS) delivery models and words and phrases about web sites, e-commerce ...

Ask a Question About warezPowered by ITKnowledgeExchange.com

Get answers from your peers on your most technical challenges

Tech TalkComment



    Contribute to the conversation

    All fields are required. Comments will appear at the bottom of the article.