Microsoft Hopes To Curb Piracy With New Campaign

Well it looks like Microsoft is taking further steps to curb piracy this time by using nagware.

M&C Tech: Microsoft is enhancing its Windows Genuine Advantage (WGA) test tool to detect PCs that are not using a properly licensed version of the Windows operating system via an update patch.

Alerts will be sent directly to millions of users of pirate software in the United States, United Kingdom, Malaysia, Australia and New Zealand when they download Windows updates, Microsoft said.

The alerts read: ‘This copy of Windows is not genuine; you may be a victim of software counterfeiting’ and include a link to a web site explaining what people with pirated versions of Windows need to do.

The only way to stop the alerts from regularly appearing on the screen is to replace the pirated version with a genuine copy of Windows.

Is this a great business practice? Not really. Microsoft stands to lose more legitimate customers whose systems may unintentionally show as having pirated software than those with actual pirated software. Most likely pirates will simply not apply the specific patch or develop a way to stop the patch from communicating with Microsoft.