Voted Best Answer
Feb 21, 2017 - 07:25 PM
I believe the ruling means that SAP customers need to be extra vigilant with their indirect usage, especially for ‘in-house’ applications / applications developed internally, or applications they perceive to be running on another system such as Salesforce. This also relates to mobile devices, as part of the fine was based on a mobile applications run from iPads.
There have been a number of comments on LinkedIn about how a ‘world-class SAM function’ may not have even picked this up. To that, I would argue that someone like the CCL needs to work with SAP to help understand the exact parameters of indirect usage, what license types would then be required and how to manage said indirect access.
Vendors want to make extra revenue, sure, but should they also not have a duty to help customers understand what is and isn’t in scope of their entitlement fully? Should they not enunciate ‘grey areas’ more clearly?
I remember hearing from someone at an event last year or their organisation being fined by SAP for indirect usage. They created an ‘in-house’ mobile app that linked back to SAP, but they didn’t have a SAM or Licensing guy in place so didn’t understand the ramifications of doing so and what the implications were. Naturally, they ended up with a large bill from SAP (seven figures).
This could just be the start. I believe SAP will ramp up audits even more, and have a greater focus and intensity on the Indirect Usage piece.
This could be the first of many large indirect usage fines we see this year.