Feeds

Comet 'sold 94,000 pirate Windows CDs', claims Microsoft

Redmond sues retail chain over counterfeit disc allegations

Top three mobile application threats

Updated Microsoft has accused high-street retailer Comet of pirating 94,000 Windows Vista and Windows XP recovery CDs and selling them to consumers.

The software giant announced this morning that it had filed a suit against Comet Group PLC, accusing the group of manufacturing counterfeit discs at a factory in Hampshire and selling them through its UK retail outlets. Comet has 248 stores across the UK. A spokesperson for Microsoft was unable to say where the suit has been filed.

The allegedly counterfeit recovery discs were then sold to customers who had bought desktops and laptops running Windows, Microsoft said.

Microsoft's associate general counsel for worldwide anti-piracy and anti-counterfeiting David Finn called Comet's actions "unfair to customers" in this morning's statement.

"We expect better from retailers of Microsoft products - and our customers deserve better, too," he said.

In an official statement, Comet told The Reg it had sought legal advice from "leading counsel" to "support its view that the production of recovery discs did not infringe Microsoft’s intellectual property."

Responding specifically to Finn, Comet said it "firmly believes that it acted in the very best interests of its customers" and that punters had been "adversely affected by the decision to stop supplying recovery discs".

"Accordingly Comet is satisfied that it has a good defence to the claim and will defend its position vigorously," the retailer said.

Comet made an operating loss for the six months to October of €6.4m (£5.3m). Owner Kesa Electricals group is selling Comet to private equity shop OpCapita for £2 with the sweetener of a £50m capital injection from Kesa. The deal is expected to close next month. ®

This article has been updated with comment from Comet.

Maximizing your infrastructure through virtualization

More from The Register

next story
Apple fanbois SCREAM as update BRICKS their Macbook Airs
Ragegasm spills over as firmware upgrade kills machines
HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert
Don't panic though – Apple's backdoor is not wide open to all, guru tells us
Mozilla fixes CRITICAL security holes in Firefox, urges v31 upgrade
Misc memory hazards 'could be exploited' - and guess what, one's a Javascript vuln
NO MORE ALL CAPS and other pleasures of Visual Studio 14
Unpicking a packed preview that breaks down ASP.NET
Captain Kirk sets phaser to SLAUGHTER after trying new Facebook app
William Shatner less-than-impressed by Zuck's celebrity-only app
Cheer up, Nokia fans. It can start making mobes again in 18 months
The real winner of the Nokia sale is *drumroll* ... Nokia
EU dons gloves, pokes Google's deals with Android mobe makers
El Reg cops a squint at investigatory letters
Chrome browser has been DRAINING PC batteries for YEARS
Google is only now fixing ancient, energy-sapping bug
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.