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Brit Prof will oversee Microsoft for EC

Brussels' trustee

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A British IT security expert began work today to ensure Microsoft complies with the strictures imposed by the European Commission last year.

The Commission ruled last year that Microsoft had abused its market position, ordering the company to open up its products and hitting it with a €497m fine. The decision also provided for a trustee to oversee the company’s compliance with the ruling.

Dr Neil Barrett will be the trustee providing "technical advice to the Commission on issues relating to Microsoft’s compliance with the Commission’s 2004 Decision," Brussells said yesterday.

Microsoft has refused to accept the EC ruling lying down, unsurprisingly. While adhering to the decision for now, and thus avoiding more fines, it continues to mount an appeal.

In the meantime, Microsoft submitted a slate of candidates for the montior role, with Barrett winning the EC’s endorsment as “most qualified to carry out the Monitoring Trustee function.”

Barrett's lengthy CV includes stints at Bull and the UK government, and more recently as technical director of security consultancy IRM. He is also a visiting professor at a number of UK Universities.

More to the point, perhaps, his background is in Unix, and a quick trot across the internet shows him describing Microsoft as trying to monopolize access to vital information.®

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