Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


New Zealand computer stores caught selling pirated software

Media release
9 November 2012


New Zealand computer stores caught selling pirated software


Unsecure supply chains creating emerging cybercrime threat

A recent investigation undertaken by Microsoft New Zealand has identified six Auckland computer stores selling pirated software to consumers.

Microsoft’s investigators bought computers loaded with unlicensed Microsoft software at:
• IT Serve International
• Comtech International
• D&J IT Solutions
• Computer Xpress
• R.A.Y Tech
• Powernet Computers.

All six stores admitted breaching Microsoft’s copyright, and settlements were reached with each company.

"It tends to be the smaller, local computer stores that are the ones selling unauthorised software in New Zealand," says Clayton Noble, Legal Counsel for Microsoft.

"We don't put these people out of business, but it's important that we stop them selling the unauthorised software, which can often be full of malware that is capable of compromising computer security and even facilitating identity theft. Some strains of counterfeit software products contain hidden key-logging software that allows criminals to steal passwords, bank account details and other personal information."

Some pirated software is also unable to receive and install important security updates, which increases exposure to viruses.

The six stores paid a combined $34,000 in settlements for copyright infringement.

According to a recent Business Software Alliance (BSA) report, 22 percent of New Zealand software is unauthorised, the fourth lowest piracy rate in the world.

"New Zealand's strong respect for intellectual property, its robust legal system and general awareness of the benefits of using genuine, licensed software mean that New Zealand has one of the lowest software piracy rates in the world," says Noble.

“But we’ve still got a long way to go. More than 1 in 5 copies of software in New Zealand are pirated. It would be great to see New Zealand leading the world in this area.”

Last month Microsoft's Digital Crimes Unit exposed an emerging tactic of cybercriminals – infiltrating unsecured supply chains to embed malware before a new computer even gets to the retail store.

"Unsecure supply chains are one of the key ways cybercriminals are getting malware to unsuspecting victims, so buying from a reputable retailer that has a secure supply chain is one of the best ways to ensure the authenticity of your computer's software," says Noble.

"It's great to see Microsoft taking the necessary steps to discourage the distribution of pirated software, and educating consumers on the dangers of using unlicensed software," says Darren Smith, General Manager of PB Technologies, a Microsoft reseller.

“Retailers selling unauthorised software are trying to undercut those of us who are doing the right thing by our customers. It’s just not fair business practice."

"Retailers that use reputable suppliers will be the winners in the end, as consumers become more aware of the risks associated with unsecured supply chains and unauthorised software, and will stick to trusted outlets," adds Smith.

When purchasing software consumers should follow the ‘Buyer’s Checklist’ to ensure your software is genuine.

1. Are you buying from a known and reputable retailer/seller?
Buy from a retailer or seller you know and trust.

2. Is the software you are looking to purchase much cheaper than from other retailers?
The general rule of thumb is proven time and time again – if it seems too good to be true, it usually is.

3. Are you able to contact the seller after you receive the software?
Be wary if the seller is reluctant or won’t provide a phone number, address and other pertinent contact details.

4. Does the seller have satisfied and happy customers?
When buying online, always look for feedback from other customers. If there is negative feedback, steer clear.

5. What is the seller’s return policy?
Make sure there is a way to return the product, and make sure that you feel confident that your seller will be willing and able to help you with after-sales service if there is a problem with your product.

6. When buying online, are the photos in the advertisement of the actual software being sold?
Be wary of stock standard marketing photos that may not be of the actual software you are buying.

7. Can you physically check the product?
If you can, check the product thoroughly before you purchase it. Use the How to Tell website to help you tell if it is legitimate software. Always be wary of sellers who are reluctant to let you view the product.

8. Are you purchasing the correct license?
For example, if you use academic software and you are not a student, lecturer or teacher, you are in breach of the license.

9. Does the software have a genuine Certificate of Authenticity?
A Certificate of Authenticity is a label that helps you identify genuine software. This is a visual identifier that helps determine whether or not the software you are buying is genuine. Check the Microsoft how to tell website to be able to tell the difference between genuine and fake Certificates of Authenticity.

Kiwis can also report sellers of counterfeit Microsoft products by emailing nzpiracy@microsoft.com, or by going visiting www.microsoft.com/nz/piracy and submitting an online report.

-- ENDS --

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gaza.Scoop: UNRWA School, Ambulances Attacked - Gaza MOH

The Ministry of Health Gaza expresses its horror and outrage at the latest Israeli massacre moments ago at an UNRWA school sheltering displaced persons in Beit Hanoun. Ten people have been killed and there is a large number of wounded. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell:
On Gaza And Burning The Israeli Flag

One of the selling points in New Zealand’s campaign for a temporary seat on the Security Council is that we have a pluckily independent voice to offer on international conflicts.

This image is not entirely self-delusional. When we did occupy a temporary UN Security Council seat in the 1990s, New Zealand was forthright about the need for the international community to actively respond to the Rwanda genocide. On April 14, 1994, New Zealand, Nigeria and the Czech Republic were the only nations to call for a forceful UN intervention to halt the killings. It was a proud moment in the diplomatic record of the Bolger government.

What then, is the current National government doing with respect to the slaughter in Gaza? More>>

 

Parliament Today:

TAIC Report: Urgent Recommendations After Melling Rail Accident

The Transport Accident Investigation Commission has made four urgent recommendations to KiwiRail following the accident two months ago (27 May) when a Matangi passenger train collided with a stop block at Melling Station, Lower Hutt. More>>

ALSO:

Red Tape: Local Regulations Go Under Microscope

The Government says it is accepting nearly all of the recommendations the Productivity Commission has made on ways to improve local regulations. More>>

ALSO:

Spending Questions: Claudette Hauiti To Step Aside At Election

National Party President Peter Goodfellow confirms that he has received notification from List MP Claudette Hauiti that she plans to step aside at the 20 September election. More>>

ALSO:

EPA: Board Of Inquiry Rejects Basin Flyover By Majority Of 3 To 1

The independent Board of Inquiry delegated to decide on the Basin Bridge Proposal has, by a majority decision (3 to 1), cancelled the Transport Agency’s Notice of Requirement and declined its resource consent applications for the construction, operation and maintenance of a flyover on State Highway 1 in Wellington City... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Non-Apology To Tania Billingsley

The refusal by Prime Minister John Key to issue a personal apology to Tania Billingsley has been accompanied by an array of excuses... Yesterday though, Key’s choice of words indicated that an apology was the last thing on his mind. More>>

ALSO:

Conventions: Winston Peters On The Nation

Winston Peters opens door to standing in East Coast Bays electorate, says it's an "exciting point" and he's thinking about it. "I’ve had a whole lot of people writing to me and calling up and saying ‘why don’t you have a go in East Coast Bays’." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news