Microsoft study claims 33% of software is counterfeit

A study performed by IDC and commissioned by Microsoft has claimed that 33% of all software is counterfeit, revealing a number of other interesting statistics on the way to its conclusion. IDC surveyed 1,104 consumers, 973 business users and 268 CIO/IT managers across 10 countries to highlight how prevalent piracy and software counterfeiting is in the market today.

According to the study, the "direct costs to enterprises" related to dealing with counterfeit software and malware "will hit $114 billion this year", while "consumers worldwide will waste 1.5 billion hours this year" dealing with these problems. A large portion of pirated software apparently comes pre-installed on bought computers, with 78% of all pirated software coming with spyware. Also, 45% of the respondents claimed that pirated software caused their PC to slow down enough to warrant an uninstall.

It was also interesting to see that 48% of the consumer respondents feared loss of data the most when installing "infectious pirated software", while 29% feared identity theft the most; just 2% were "not worried". Meanwhile, 46% of consumers on average worldwide said they did not install updates to software, while 10% of CIOs and IT managers disabled automatic program updates.

If you have the time and you're particularly interested, the entire 29-page report is available via the source link below.

Source: Microsoft (PDF) via: CNET

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Well seeing how you made $15Billion in profit on the 66%, I don';t see what youre crying about. Though I am not for or against piracy, I am just saying, since you made 15B in profits last year, its not hurting you all that much.

I mean lets do the math. It cost you $100M to fight a war you're never going to win. Its as stupid as the USA spending $300M to fight in the war on drugs, yet many people will still have them.

How about this as we tell America. Let all the people have all the drugs they want and charge for it. You will make far more money than you waste fighting. For software? Easy fix. You sell software with reduced functionality and let people p[ay to add the functions they need and want. For a product like Windows and Office that would be pretty easy.

You sound just like the people who cry about pirates of music and video. Cost isnt the issue. Even at .99 per song, people still steal. Some people will never pay, but the vast majority always will. That vast majority will make you plenty ofmoney. There are 7B people on this planet, At least 66% of them will always pay which translates into Billions of dollars.

You're basically throwing money in the garbage. WHy not use it to make products a bit cheaper, maybe the pirates will become a smaller number. But no matter what you do, that number will never fall to ZERO.

So how exactly does an increasing number of installations of a counterfeit operating system increase microsoft's cost of dealing with it?

The only answer i can come up with is Windows Updates bandwidth, but come on.. really?

Software prolly stayed the same because wages have gone up, land rental, utilities etc gone up so thatll be why. Cant outsource software to thailand or china (well you could but your asking for insta piracy there) cus there mostly just busy workers that put our crap together.

The thing with software is, is its an up front purchase that costs alot initially; with windows especially if they had some sort of payment plan like pay it over 6 months with 0% interest (MS can afford it) type thing youll probably find less piracy and if the person doesnt pay up, key gets blocked, they crack it or whatever and there back to square one. If it was just done with digital downloads only then theres no cost for discs and stuff. So its definately doable.

My own internal study says 33% of software are terribly overpriced.

The price of hardware went down significantly in the last 15 years. The price of software did not. Today if someone wants to be legit it will cost him much more money in software than hardware which is extremely stupid. You can have a very good workstation for 1000. It can cost you easily as much as 5 times this amount in software to actually work with it.

They should be happy with it! If they ever manage to block all counterfeit software, people will turn to free solutions and this will be MS' end.

sounds about right, then again, i never understood why there was so much piracy for office and stuff like that when there are so many decent alternatives, that are compatible.

Any amateur statistician can tell you a sample size of 2000 participants, so loosely defined is a gauranteed "study" with a few specific outcomes, this is just another BS low-blow to defer attention to the real problem of Adobe and MS, they are $$$ whores and try to exploit international markets to the point of criminality. If you had any sense, you instantly realize this is just another "funded BS study"

- Kaboose - said,
If you had any sense, you instantly realize this is just another "funded BS study"
And if you had any rationality, you would release that in most cases, the price differences are due to taxes that the government impose, not the company.

For a global study that sample size seems small .. but I'm not an expert on statistics ..

Anyway, which software, specifically? Why doesn't it give examples? It just looks like scaremongering to me.

maybe it's the fault of other countries if products cost more than in US,in Europe everything costs more,not just tecnology

Office Home & Student cost here 3050 rubles. That's $99 USD. Now adjust it to incomes (4 to 10 times difference depending on region). Even if taking 4 of richest part of nation it's still would cost for you $400. Adjusting to country average income it would be 7 times less than in US. So it would cost you $700. Would you pay that price?

Oh man, I can't wait to hear everybody's opinion on how it all boils down to one problem that anybody could solve by just doing <x>.

Serves them right for using the good ol USA "greed is good" corporate policy and trying to charge exorbitant prices in countries like Australia.

dvb2000 said,
Serves them right for using the good ol USA "greed is good" corporate policy and trying to charge exorbitant prices in countries like Australia.

Indeed. Us Aussies always get the ass end of the stick and then they will be the first to complain that we have a high piracy rate here.

$150 or less for software the average person will use for 5+ years, not to mention the fact that the software is free for most people since the public rarely buys an OS, not a new PC. That isn't even considering the fact that the reason it is more expensive there is because of the Australia taxes, not because of Microsoft's pricing schemes. People will use any excuse possible to justify their own greed though. Complaining about, at most, $30 a year for software they use daily, is nothing but greed on your part, Ingramator and Dcb2000. Considering it was as low as $45 when it came out, you are fooling nobody but yourself. The only people who are greedy little brats with Microsoft's software prices are the pirates.

ILikeTobacco said,
even considering the fact that the reason it is more expensive there is because of the Australia taxes, not because of Microsoft's pricing schemes. .

I think you have been listening to Microsoft a bit too much. Tax has nothing to do with it. We are constantly ripped off in Australia by Microsoft, Apple, Adobe, and others. We have a flat rate GST which is 10% - That's it.

mikeyjames said,
We are constantly ripped off in Australia by Microsoft, Apple, Adobe, and others. We have a flat rate GST which is 10% - That's it.

You are ripped off, but we are robbed off. That's why China and Russia will keep the lead in [s]"piracy"[/s]fair play.