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32% of Pirated Windows 7 Copies Possess Malicious Code

Media Surveillance, a Germany-based anti-piracy solutions firm, lately downloaded above 500 pirated copies of Windows 7 (and Windows activation exploits). The company found that 32% of these pirated copies contained malicious code.

According to Joe Williams, general manager of Genuine Windows, who revealed this data in its blog saying that searching, downloading or installing counterfeit software or activation exploits on Internet is quite dangerous because the websites that promote these pirated software often contain Trojans, viruses, and malware, which are either directly built or are found packaged with the counterfeit software or activation exploit, according to the blog posted on Windows on February 11, 2010.

In addition, Microsoft also explained the risks involved in using the pirated operating systems. This is because the software is not supported by the vendor and vulnerable to hundreds of virus and malware prevailing over the Internet.

Experts identified that in order to distribute computer viruses and malware the attackers are increasingly leveraging activation circumvention methods and pirated copies of Windows.

Apart from this, a study called "The Risks of Obtaining and Using Pirated Software" by the research firm IDC highlights that one-fourth websites offering fake software tried to install malicious code on downloading; this rate is on a rising trend.

Moreover, according to the 5th Annual PC Software Piracy Study conducted by IDC, the world economy faces an annual loss of over US$45 Billion because of the prevalent problem of software piracy. Consumers also face system failures, potential identity theft, and unrecoverable data losses, and the firm identifies that tens of thousands of dollars are lost in dealing with each incident of compromised data in the corporate world.

Experts stated that software piracy poses serious risks to the businesses. Further, not to mention the ethical issues, inadequate maintenance of security and accuracy apart from associated penalties require considerable attention. Also, purchasing the fully licensed software will be much economical than dealing with these issues later on.

Williams, thus, mentioned in his blog that while purchasing a new computer, a buyer must look for the Certificate of Authenticity so as to ensure that their system contains genuine Windows.

Related article: “Loopholes did not cause online banking thefts”: ICBC

» SPAMfighter News - 2/25/2010

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