Microsoft (MSFT) plans to enhance its anti-piracy engineering, education and enforcement efforts by expanding the Windows Genuine Advantage program to users in China.
Windows Genuine Advantage checks the authenticity of a user's software and provides access to Microsoft software and other benefits, helping consumers and businesses ensure that they are receiving the greater reliability, faster access to updates, and richer user experiences offered by genuine Windows XP software.
"Software piracy costs customers, software vendors and national economies billions of dollars every year. The best way to fight software piracy is to ensure that users recognize and receive all the benefits of genuine software," said Will Poole, senior vice president of the Windows Client Business at Microsoft. "When our customers participate in Windows Genuine Advantage, they will know they have easy access to updates, added-value software offerings and other benefits of genuine Windows XP, not the uncertainty and risks of counterfeit software."
In addition to the increased rewards for users of genuine Windows software, Microsoft will begin piloting a legalization offer in the People's Republic of China, Norway and the Czech Republic for qualified participants who discover that they have been sold a counterfeit version of Windows XP. These customers will be offered a genuine version of Windows at a reduced price. All participants with counterfeit versions of Windows will continue to receive guidance on how to recognize genuine copies of Windows, how to seek redress from the seller, and how to protect their PC.