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Maximising the Advantages of Escrow Services

Many companies are now taking advantage of the improved technology to maximize the use of various software solutions. This has necessitated companies to license different software to meet their technological needs. The software tends to be very expensive, and it is important for both the licensor and the licensee to protect their investments. As such, escrow services have been very critical for software developers because the help protect the interests of both parties. A software escrow service involves using a third party to store the source code of a particular application software. This third party is known as the escrow agent and should be independent of both the licensor and the licensee. Either the buyer or software vendor can introduce the escrow agreement to protect their interests.

Software exists in two formats namely the object code format and the source code format. The licensor only gets the object code format while the developer deposits the source code format with the escrow agent. Deposing the source code with the escrow agent ensure that the software is updated and maintained on a regular basis. This allows the business to cushion itself against losses that may arise from poorly maintained software. In the case of bankruptcy of the developer, the escrow agent makes sure that the software keeps running by providing the source code to the licensee. With escrow services failure to provide maintenance or support as per the agreement gives the escrow service the right to surrender the source code to the licensee.

Source code escrow also benefits the software developer by protecting their intellectual property rights. Due to the high number of software theft, developers are not comfortable with sharing their source code with the licensee. Both the developer and the licensee are bound by various terms and conditions clearly outlined in the escrow agreement. Both the licensor and the licensee have various obligations which they are required to fulfill. Failure to fulfill these obligations there are serious consequences. The use and transfer of the source code is clearly discussed under the escrow agreement.

Besides just storing the source code, escrow agent helps verify the availability of the source code. The escrow services also verify that the software is working as it should which is also very important. It is always advisable for a licensee to use escrow services if the software supports a vital function of the organization or has a direct impact on the revenue. If the cost of acquiring the software is very high, the licensee is also advised to make sure that they use an escrow agent.

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