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Old 06-22-2011, 04:18 PM
peewee2011 peewee2011 is offline
Junior Member
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 1
Default Worthwile Cracking

Hi Guys,

I have always been a fan of the idea that when I want real answers on security I ask the guys breaking in and not the guys protecting as ironically enough the guys breaking in are usually a lot more honest.

Having said that I have a question about protecting my application.

I have a small app (it's a financial help app) for the home user. As such apps for home users are prime targets for hacking so I will need some help.

My question however is not form a technical but a financial perspective.

Most obfuscators/encrypters/licensors admit that their software can be cracked if someone wants it bad enough. So keeping that in mind I want to make it so nobody wants to bad enough. The way I want to achieve this is via pricing it correctly.

So to my question:
What price would be low enough to discourage hacking?
I want something that when a user comes to a forum such as this and asks for a hack he gets a bunch of replies of the callibre of "Bigger off, it's very cheap, just pay the guy and stop whining" (or something equally colorfull).

Now Please don't say U$0 or free ... I am still looking to make money but be cheap enough so a lot of people will afford it and nobody will bother cracking it.

My initial thoughts were in the golden under U$10 margin.

So my price is obviously U$9.99 (per licence - one user only).

Is this enough for someone to want hack or is that low enough to slide under the radar?

Please don't flame me for wanting to make some money (if possible ) and I apologise in advance if this has been asked before.

Thanks for reading
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Old 06-23-2011, 01:18 AM
hock hock is offline
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 38

i am sorry to disappoint you.

the main reason people here crack or reverse a software is for gaining knowledge, and to prove there skills. It is usually for self satisfaction. money is not a criteria.

Having said this, lets look it from a users point of view.

I the software saves me $100 a year I can pay $100 to $200 for it, assuming it has a useful life of 3 or four years. Also the future upgrades are also an issue.
If the software is for dependent on some policies which change every year and hence I am forced to buy the new software every time, I may not even want to buy it, I will look for a cracked version or I will buy it, if it is around $10.
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Old 06-23-2011, 01:41 AM
yogi_saw yogi_saw is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 533

hehe my friend I can't tell u abt the price... but definitely I will advice u something that will (may ) change the price totally...
whether ur soft is very useful or not
whether ur soft is available to public or not
whether u r implementing good protection or not
whether ur soft is low in price or not
if somebody wants to crack it he will crack it!!!

I have seen many groups releasing cracks over net which r not so useful software, not very high in demand and even lowest in price but still the crackers crack them...
if ur soft is so useful and if I would be at ur place, I would have made money in first 6 mnths, coz after that crack would come out and u loose business.
so keep this in mind deciding the price.

and I agree with hock for users point of view
"Don't backstab me, i have two eyes on my back..." saint DABANGG

Last edited by yogi_saw : 06-23-2011 at 01:44 AM.
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Old 06-23-2011, 02:16 AM
Dr Pete Dr Pete is offline
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 25

Other options.
Don't allow d/l for trials. You have to be better at marketing then because your program won't be in the hands of potential client to help you sell.

Allow money back, if your price is low enough so you still make money most people won't return product to get a refund.

Good luck.
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Old 06-23-2011, 02:46 AM
SunBeam SunBeam is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 61

Hi there.

I speak from experience when I say this - no matter what the price is, no matter how well protected it is, no matter how much crypto you put into it - if it [b]spikes the attention of a reverser, it will get cracked.

Here's some decent suggestions, not price-related though:

- try to make it as unique as possible: considering you will have hundreds of sales for starters, although a difficult task, try and individualize application for each customer;

- embed markers in the application's code, not referenced, something only you know of - say, I put at location X marker Y, so I know this build is for CustomerID: Y;

- use server-activation, local activation sucks: don't offer support for offline activating - you will lose some customers, but will boost interest - "hey, is this app that good?";

This way, if application DOES get cracked, you will know whose license to revoke in the future. Won't probably gain you anything, but if you were to chose between "doing nothing about it" AND "doing something about it", I'd go with second option, don't you agree? (it = application being cracked)

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Old 06-23-2011, 02:50 AM
kao kao is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 184

You are asking the wrong question.

Look at that iPhone/Android market. These phone owners can afford to buy expensive phones and/or contracts with carriers. Yet they will steal app that would cost $0.99. Why? Because they can.

There is no price that would discourage cracking. So, instead of asking "What price would be low enough to discourage hacking?", you should ask "What price will give me biggest profits?"

Consider 2 extreme scenarios:
1) set the price to $1000. One user who really likes your work, buys it. 499 users will just steal it. Income - $1000, costs on tech support are virtually 0.
2) set the price to $1.99. 450 users buy it, 50 users steal it. Income - $895, costs on tech support for 450 users - significant.

Of course, I am exaggerating here. But sometimes setting higher price means getting bigger income, and ignoring the rampant piracy is the best thing you can do. YMMV.
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