It's no secret that employees of a company get generous discounts towards software produced by their colleagues. Microsoft is no exception. Of course, software purchased from there must be used by employees and only their immediate family and friends. That restriction forbids people from selling discounted software at normal street (or slightly reduced) prices on say eBay. Of course, this doesn't apply to Microsoft-branded swag such as t-shirts and stationary that you can also pick up online.
So it's a bit of a head scratcher when an employee at Microsoft's company store managed to steal almost $10,000 worth of Microsoft software and sell 35 products via eBay before being caught. He also managed to leave behind a video trail that led detectives and Microsoft to their culprit. A braver act than those accused of leaking Windows 8 builds, one might say.
As SeattlePi reports, first-degree felony theft charges have been filed against 31-year-old Ulugbek Shodmonov of Redmond on April 26th. Shodmonov has not been jailed over this case. According to the report, Shodmonov spent most of his allowance on company store merchandise by August, although Redmond Police Detective Nathan Sanger told the court at Shodmonov's hearing that only one copy of Windows 7 Professional showed up on company purchase records.
So how did Shodmonov manage to obtain the 17 packages of Microsoft software and the 18 Xbox 360 games that he sold? Surveillance video caught the man going in and out of an employee area 22 times, taking software out of a locked room and placing the items in a laptop computer bag that was left in the store's gift shop room. Redmond police were alerted to the alleged thefts in December.
In addition to termination of employment, Shodmonov could be held responsible for the entire amount and additional fines or jail time. All that just to make a quick buck by selling software of questionable legality on sites such as eBay.