Dubai, UAE: October 7th, 2009: In its ongoing efforts to curb the spread of pirated software and ensure a level playing field for the region’s legitimate resellers, Microsoft Gulf today announced that it had filed criminal complaints which led to four anti-piracy raids on resellers in the UAE over the last two months. Three raids were conducted in Dubai and one in Sharjah and resulted in the confiscation of several pirated software CDs and personal computers (PCs) loaded with fake copies of Microsoft Windows and Office.
As an active member of the Business Software Alliance (BSA), the international association established by the global software industry to promote a safe and legal digital world, Microsoft continues to educate customers and partners about the negative effects of software piracy on the local economy and to increase awareness about the risks of counterfeit to consumers using counterfeit or hacked software, such as exposure to security issues like viruses, identify or credit card theft. By partnering with local government bodies, Microsoft has also stepped up its regional efforts to take legal steps against those who manufacture and distribute illegal software.
H.E. Mohammed Ahmed Bin Abdulaziz Al Shihhi, General Manager of the UAE Ministry of Economy said, “In addition to the impact on economies and innovation, software piracy poses very real risks to businesses and consumers. It is for this reason that protecting Intellectual Property Rights is at the top of the agenda for the Ministry where we partner with organizations such as Microsoft in the development of strategies and mechanisms that will help tackle this issue in the Arab world.”
“Microsoft takes the issue of the pirated software very seriously because our customers expect and deserve the highest-level of satisfaction when purchasing our products”, said Jawad Al Redha, IPR Manager, Microsoft Gulf. “Therefore, we work with stakeholders across the Gulf, including governments, industry partners and educational bodies, to build awareness of the value of intellectual property as a driver of economic growth and encourage respect for intellectual property rights. Through the Genuine Software Initiative (GSI), Microsoft is committed to advancing education amongst our customers while investing heavily in engineering world-class anti-counterfeiting technologies and to supporting government and law enforcement on taking action against counterfeiters.”
Dale Waterman, Microsoft’s Corporate Attorney for Anti Piracy for the Middle East and Africa region, added, “Every year, millions of consumers and businesses are hurt by counterfeit software that they acquire unwittingly. Consumers, businesses and resellers continually ask for help in mitigating the threats posed by pirates. We are heavily investing our resources and time into winning the battle against piracy by intensifying our collaboration with government and law enforcement agencies in the Gulf region to ensure that pirates are brought to justice. Our enforcement efforts are a key component in our battle against piracy.”
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (NASDAQ:'MSFT') is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential. Microsoft Gulf opened its Dubai-based headquarters in 1991. Microsoft Gulf today oversees Microsoft activities in Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and the UAE. Microsoft Corporation's address on the worldwide web is: www.microsoft.com and Microsoft’s Gulf web site is: www.microsoft.com/gulf.