What is software escrow?

Software escrow (or source code escrow) is electronic data granted to an entity but held by an Escrow Agent and only released after a condition is met

'Electronic data' is any data that can reside on a computer. For example, the 'source code' that software developers create.

The 'Entity' is the End-user of the electronic data. For a software vendor this is their end-user - their client.

The 'Escrow Agent' is Harbinger. Escrow agents hold the electronic data - for example a vendor's source code.

'Condition is met' - a pre-determined condition, often related to insolvency or the inability of the vendor to fulfil an existing contract.

Software escrow is a term that is interchangeable with source code escrow and data escrow. Software escrow is a relationship in which a Client (or licencee) requires software intellectual property (the source code and other associated) material to be stored with an escrow agent during the term of a software license, support or other agreement. The material would be released based upon the occurrence of specific events defined within the escrow agreement. Clients use software escrow services to protect against a disruption in support of mission critical technologies due to vendor failures.