A system for use when distributing information stored in a piece of storage medium from a supplier to users through a distributor(s). The information is ciphered when stored in each piece of storage medium in a supplier apparatus. In addition, ciphered key information may be stored in the piece of storage medium together with the above information to be distributed. A distributor apparatus may convert the cipher of the key information before distributing the piece of storage medium to the users. The distributor apparatus may write further information in the piece of storage medium before distributing the piece of storage medium to the users. The further information indicates a limit of an operation of reading the information by each user, and may be a maximum allowable accumulated time of reading the information by each user, a maximum number of repetitions of the reading operation of the information by each user, or a time limit of the operation of the reading operation by each user. Each user apparatus stops the reading operation when the reading operation has reached the limit. Further, each user apparatus may write information indicating an amount of the reading operation therein, in the piece of storage medium, and the distributor apparatus may compare a sum of amounts of the above limits for pieces of storage medium distributed therefrom, with a sum of the amounts of the reading operations in the respective pieces of storage medium after the pieces of storage medium are returned to the distributor apparatus.