SEMI Anti-Piracy Server Certification Protocol for Software License Management Reaches Key Milestone

SEMI | 09-01-2021

The SEMI Electronics System Design (ESD) Alliance announced completion of the anti-piracy SEMI Server Certification Protocol (SSCP) for software license management, a year-long joint development effort led by the ESD Alliance, a SEMI Technology Community.

The SSCP, approved by development committee members Cadence, Siemens EDA and Synopsys, uniquely identifies each customer license server to assure that licenses are issued only by authorized servers to help protect against software piracy. The SCCP is now undergoing standardization and will be managed by the SEMI Standards group after its finalization as an industry standard. The committee members intend to implement the protocol in their respective license management software.

“A big thank you to Cadence, Siemens EDA, and Synopsys, our joint development association partners, for their work to push the protocol forward,” said Bob Smith, executive director of the SEMI ESD Alliance. “It took a concerted effort to reach this key milestone and that push will continue as we move forward to finalizing SSCP as an industry standard. Software piracy costs industry billions of dollars per year and hurts both vendors and their customers, a problem the protocol will help mitigate.”

An industry-standard protocol to combat software piracy is a growing necessity for design automation software suppliers to ensure only authorized servers are issuing licenses. Design automation software is complex and requires ongoing and significant R&D investments. Bad actors can apply server cloning techniques to access unlicensed copies of the software, putting legitimate users and software vendors at a competitive disadvantage by forcing software vendors to increase prices to support continuing investments in R&D.

“The SSCP is a significant step forward for the semiconductor industry in its efforts to stem software piracy,” said Nimish Modi, senior vice president of market and business development at Cadence. “The collaboration among design automation suppliers ensures a wide-ranging and inclusive anti-piracy strategy.”

“Completing the server certification protocol is a huge achievement,” said Joe Sawicki, executive vice president of IC EDA for Siemens. “Congratulations to everyone who worked to establish this anti-piracy standard that protects against theft and provides a level playing field for all our users.”

“Synopsys is pleased to collaborate across the design automation industry to define a method to combat piracy,” said Arun Venkatachar, vice president of Synopsys central engineering. “It is critical for the industry to level the playing field for legitimate users. We are committed to working with SEMI and the industry to implement the protocol and make it an industry standard.” 

“Ansys applauds the anti-piracy initiative led by the SEMI ESD Alliance to develop the SSPC," said Shane Emswiler, senior vice president at Ansys. "Ansys is committed to ensuring fair access for all users and combating piracy. We are proud to stand with our peers in this effort."