Microsoft Works to Protect Windows XP From Counterfeiters and Software Pirates

REDMOND, Wash., Oct. 25, 2001 — As Microsoft Corp.’s new operating system, Windows® XP, is launched today, the company has reaffirmed its commitment to protecting intellectual property from the hands of software counterfeiters. Recognizing that intellectual property is a driving force that fuels productivity and economic growth worldwide, Microsoft’s anti-piracy efforts are intended to decrease the negative impact software piracy has on consumers, the software industry and the global economy.

According to software industry reports by the Business Software Alliance, it is estimated that 37 percent of all business software applications worldwide are pirated and in some countries that number surpasses 90 percent, ultimately costing the global economy $12 billion annually.

“We recognize that Windows XP has been eagerly awaited by consumers and businesses as a new standard for reliable and efficient computing,”
said Nancy Anderson, associate general counsel at Microsoft.
“With the anticipated popularity of Windows XP comes the threat of sophisticated software counterfeiters who may try to take advantage of unsuspecting consumers.”

Microsoft continues to work worldwide with local law enforcement, government and industry organizations to protect consumers from software piracy. Microsoft has also implemented measures to help consumers ensure they acquire genuine Windows XP. All PCs purchased with Windows XP software preinstalled should have a new Certificate of Authenticity (COA) label attached to the system. This COA label has an embedded holographic design revealing the words
“Microsoft”
and
“GENIUNE.”
Retail versions of Windows XP will also include a COA label on the retail box and a Windows XP CD-ROM that features an edge-to-edge hologram technology on the entire surface of the CD.

Microsoft has also created the How to Tell Web site, an interactive site located at http://www.microsoft.com/piracy/howtotell/ that is designed to help consumers better distinguish between genuine and counterfeit Windows operating system software acquired with a new PC. How to Tell is translated into over 30 languages and links to more than 100 computer manufacturer Web sites worldwide.

Windows XP products also contain software-based product activation technology. Microsoft Product Activation is an anti-piracy technology designed to verify that software products have been legitimately licensed and reduce the form of piracy known as
“casual copying.”
Activation is quick, simple and unobtrusive and protects consumer privacy.

Consumers who use counterfeit software may be at risk of introducing harmful computer viruses into their system and receiving software that may be missing key software code that could render the program unusable. Consumers who acquire counterfeit Microsoft® software are not eligible for technical support, warranty protection and upgrades. Customers or resellers in North America with further questions on what features are included on genuine Microsoft software should contact the Microsoft anti-piracy hot line, toll-free, at (800) RU-LEGIT (785-3448) or send e-mail to piracy@microsoft.com . Microsoft anti-piracy hot lines outside North America can be found at http://www.microsoft.com/piracy/reporting/piracy_out_us.asp . Additional information on piracy is available at Microsoft’s anti-piracy Web site at http://www.microsoft.com/piracy/ .

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq
“MSFT”
) is the worldwide leader in software, services and Internet technologies for personal and business computing. The company offers a wide range of products and services designed to empower people through great software — any time, any place and on any device.

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