The study points out that world-wide estimates of piracy rates are based mostly on inferences and the 'gut feeling' of the BSA's research organisation IDC; as they suggest:
For the study, IDC used proprietary statistics for software and hardware shipments gathered through surveys of vendors, users and the channel, and enlisted IDC analysts in 60+ countries to review local market conditions. With ongoing coverage of hardware and software markets in 100+ countries, and with sixty percent of its analyst force outside the United States, IDC has a deep and broad information base from which to assess the market and estimate the rate of PC software piracy around the world.
As well as overt piracy via "hole-in-the-wall" stores all over the world (both package sales and pre-loaded software), the survey counts less easily quantifiable instances such as volume licence miscounts.
As would reasonably expected, the US tops the list of the greatest dollar value of pirated software and also the lowest piracy rate; which makes sense as the US is easily the largest software market in the world.
Australia has the fifth lowest piracy rate (at 25%) and the 19th highest piracy value (at $US550M).
Readers' attention is drawn to page 11 of the full report where the influence of free and open source software (FOSS) is factored into the overall software market.