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Author Topic: Are Microsoft violating Sections 1 and 3 of the Computer Misuse Act 1990 ?  (Read 3270 times)

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Offline PCNetSpec

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If Microsoft are now admitting that even if you disable all spying options in the "privacy" section of Windows 10 it STILL continues to report home .. effectively admitting that the privacy settings are misleading and meaningless, and that tracking CANNOT be disabled:
http://www.forbes.com/sites/gordonkelly/2015/11/02/microsoft-confirms-unstoppable-windows-10-tracking/

Does that mean they're in violation of Section 1 and 3 of the Computer Misuse Act 1990:
http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1990/18/section/1
and
http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1990/18/section/3
?
« Last Edit: November 09, 2015, 09:28:20 am by PCNetSpec »
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Offline emegra

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Re: Are Microsoft violating Sections 1 and 3 of the Computer Misuse Act 1990 ?
« Reply #1 on: November 09, 2015, 10:08:16 am »

Quote
Does that mean they're in violation of Section 1 and 3 of the Computer Misuse Act 1990:

It probably is but unless you had a bazillion quid to risk fighting the case you'd probably never be able to prove it

Personally I think Microsoft Windows is misuse of a computer

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Offline PCNetSpec

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Re: Are Microsoft violating Sections 1 and 3 of the Computer Misuse Act 1990 ?
« Reply #2 on: November 09, 2015, 10:16:19 am »
But that's my point .. if they've publicly admitted it, and if what they've admitted actually does violate section 1 and/or 3 .. does it need proving ?
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Offline emegra

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Re: Are Microsoft violating Sections 1 and 3 of the Computer Misuse Act 1990 ?
« Reply #3 on: November 09, 2015, 11:07:23 am »
From what I see they're blatantly breaking the rules but you know as well as I do the law is a weird and wonderful thing and never what it seems especially where it applies to multi billion dollar corporations like Microsoft

 I'm sure their legal team are well aware of Section 1 and 3 of the Computer Misuse Act 1990: and probably figure they're covering themselves in the EULA and even if they're not anybody who wants to prove otherwise will have a fight on their hands and who wants to fight Microsoft

I don't think there are any grey areas about Windows 10, if you agree to that EULA and use it you can kiss any privacy you have on your PC goodbye no matter what your privacy settings are


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Offline AndyInMokum

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Re: Are Microsoft violating Sections 1 and 3 of the Computer Misuse Act 1990 ?
« Reply #4 on: November 09, 2015, 11:10:50 am »
Call me cynical if you want.  It won't surprise me at all, when I read in the newspapers how the British Government has struck a deal with Microsoft.  You'll be told, "Microsoft will provide Windows 10 at a concessionary rate for government departments, saving the British taxpayer millions of pounds in licence fees :o".

What will be kept quiet, is the amendments made to: Section 1 and 3 of the Computer Misuse Act 1990 that allows Microsoft to get away with what they're doing.  As I said, call me cynical  :-X!!
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Offline PCNetSpec

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Re: Are Microsoft violating Sections 1 and 3 of the Computer Misuse Act 1990 ?
« Reply #5 on: November 09, 2015, 11:29:35 am »
The EU have taken Microsoft to task before :)

And remember, Microsoft are planning on pushing the Win10 upgrade as a "security" update .. so I'd expect quite a few businesses to arrive for work one morning and find their machines have updated themselves.

Also remember under UK and EU law, Microsofts EULA isn't worth **** (accepted or not) if it breaks a law.......

Personally I'd expect a test case "coming to a court near you soon" ;)
« Last Edit: November 09, 2015, 11:33:47 am by PCNetSpec »
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Offline zebedeeboss

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Re: Are Microsoft violating Sections 1 and 3 of the Computer Misuse Act 1990 ?
« Reply #6 on: November 09, 2015, 11:40:34 am »
Hi

My twopenny worth, they don't say you can turn "all" tracking data off. They offer the ability to turn off "some" options, but what they call "core" data will still be collected.

Quote
More importantly he also confirmed that, despite offering some options to turn elements of tracking off, core data collection simply cannot be stopped

As other people have said in the thread.  Good luck taking Microsoft to court over this one.
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Offline PCNetSpec

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Re: Are Microsoft violating Sections 1 and 3 of the Computer Misuse Act 1990 ?
« Reply #7 on: November 09, 2015, 12:04:12 pm »
It doesn't take Fred Blogs to take them to court .. it requires say the management of say Lloyds of London, or some government minister, or the head of MI5 to come into work one Monday morning and find his PC has updated to Windows 10 ;)

Or simply the EU Parliament, or say Angela Merkel to say "enough is enough" .. remember, this has happened before and the EU is p*ssed off at the US stance on spying on everyone at the moment (to the extent they're talking about offering safe haven to Snowden, and telling the US to get stuffed)

Up until now (and with closed source) it's been difficult to PROVE anything .. now they've ADMITTED it.

Microsoft are well known for breaking laws (and when caught attempting to ignore them) .. occasionally one catches up to them .. personally I'm thinking this one will be hard for them to dodge if/when the test case comes.
« Last Edit: November 09, 2015, 12:11:51 pm by PCNetSpec »
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Offline emegra

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Re: Are Microsoft violating Sections 1 and 3 of the Computer Misuse Act 1990 ?
« Reply #8 on: November 09, 2015, 12:11:03 pm »
Quote
It doesn't take Fred Blogs to take them to court .. it requires say the management of say Lloyds of London, or some government minister, or the head of MI5 to come into work one Monday morning and find his PC has updated to Windows 10

Am I understanding this right are you saying that someone can come into work and find his/her Windows 7 or 8 PC has morphed into a Windows 10 PC ?
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Offline PCNetSpec

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Re: Are Microsoft violating Sections 1 and 3 of the Computer Misuse Act 1990 ?
« Reply #9 on: November 09, 2015, 12:17:04 pm »
http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2015/oct/30/windows-10-automatic-download-windows-7-8-pc-computers

Quote
Microsoft’s efforts to entice users to upgrade to Windows 10 will soon see it automatically downloaded on to users computers without their knowledge.

The company announced that Windows 10 will become a “recommended update” starting next year, which means anyone with Windows 7 or 8 that has automatic updates activated – the default and the best way to keep a computer protected against security bugs – will have Windows 10 automatically downloaded without asking.

For clarity .. also:
http://arstechnica.co.uk/information-technology/2015/10/windows-10-will-be-made-an-automatic-recommended-update-early-next-year/

Quote
Then, early next year, it will be categorized as a "Recommended Update." This is significant, because it means that systems that are configured to download and install recommended updates—which for most people is the safest option—will automatically fetch the upgrade and start its installer. The installer will still require human intervention to actually complete—you won't wake up to find your PC with a different operating system—but Windows users will no longer need to actively seek the upgrade.

This mirrors an accidental change that Microsoft did earlier this month. The Windows 10 upgrade was showing up for some people as a recommended update and the installer started automatically.

Not that it matters .. I still contend that in the EU getting someone to agree to their EULA does NOT make them immune to EU law, and I'll put money on it that a lot of people are just going to accept the "recommended update" without thinking.

So it's really a question of WHETHER they're violating any EU laws .. if so their EULA aint gonna protect them.
« Last Edit: November 09, 2015, 12:30:55 pm by PCNetSpec »
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Offline emegra

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Re: Are Microsoft violating Sections 1 and 3 of the Computer Misuse Act 1990 ?
« Reply #10 on: November 09, 2015, 12:35:11 pm »
Quote
What’s more, the installer for Windows 10 will start once it has been downloading, presenting users with a popup. Users will be able to decline the update, once the installer has started, or prevent the update from being downloaded by manually blocking it in Windows update.

I'm not splitting hairs here but I just want to be clear on this point, they may download it (which I agree is bad enough) but they can't install it without your intervention probably because they need you to agree to another EULA,



having said that I've no doubt the downloads will include pop ups and other nagware that will pester you  incessantly until you give them what they want 




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Offline PCNetSpec

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Re: Are Microsoft violating Sections 1 and 3 of the Computer Misuse Act 1990 ?
« Reply #11 on: November 09, 2015, 12:42:02 pm »
You're missing the point .. acceptance of their EULA does NOT mean they can break the law .. if you sign an acceptance that they can kill you, THEY STILL CAN'T.

So the question becomes .. As the EULA is irrelevant if it does, does unstoppable Win10 spyware violate UK/EU law ? .. and from my understanding it's pretty cut and dried.
« Last Edit: November 09, 2015, 12:52:27 pm by PCNetSpec »
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Offline emegra

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Re: Are Microsoft violating Sections 1 and 3 of the Computer Misuse Act 1990 ?
« Reply #12 on: November 09, 2015, 01:18:43 pm »
Quote
As the EULA is irrelevant if it does, does unstoppable Win10 spyware violate UK/EU law ? .. and from my understanding it's pretty cut and dried.

I agree with you 100% but I'm just trying to look at this from Microsofts perspective, they must be aware of UK/EU laws regarding this sort of thing and it's not like they haven't found themselves on the wrong side of EU law before , so I'm assuming they have a plan to justify what they're doing or somehow circumvent the law (palms may have already been greased)

To quote Andy "Call my cynical" the law isn't about right and wrong and it certainly isn't about justice it's about money, power and influence and Microsoft have that in abundance, now I know that doesn't mean Microsoft would win (sometimes justice does prevail) but they must feel they have a good case no matter how clear cut it seems to us



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« Last Edit: November 09, 2015, 01:20:23 pm by emegra »
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Re: Are Microsoft violating Sections 1 and 3 of the Computer Misuse Act 1990 ?
« Reply #13 on: November 09, 2015, 02:16:45 pm »
Here's how I think things play out at Microsoft

Lawyer: but we're getting into a very grey legal  area here

Accountant: but think of the financial benefits, hey it works for Google

Lawyer: but it's different for Google, users actively SEND their data to Google, we're stealing it

Accountant: but, but, but I WANT THE MONEY

Lawyer: OK, an EULA will probably cover us under US law, the EU is a more complex situation, let me think.....

Management: It's not just the money, it's also the POWER .. Just do it, we'll do a cost/benefit analysis later and deal with any consequences as they arise, even if we're caught we'll probably get away with an apology and a flick of the off switch until we can figure out a way around it .. hell it's not as though we haven't previously broken multiple EU laws and only once have they come down on us, and though it cost us a little bit, who cares it achieved our goal and probably didn't cost us anywhere near as much as we gained.



Seriously I don't think Microsoft are worried about breaking laws, particularly when they think they can get away with a "sorry, it was a grey area" ..for them  it's purely a financial/market share decision.
Take the IE thing .. at the end of the day Microsoft were happy to keep paying the fine as long as it didn't cost more than the income to achieve the monoply .. and only changed direction when they'd achieved their goals.

Hey I didn't ask "Will the EU have the b*lls and teeth to do much .. beyond being duplicitous by sharing in the money via fines" (they have form here, just look at the IE thing .. they're just as bad, maybe worse, they were happy to allow Microsoft to keep selling Windows with IE as long as they kept getting the fine money when they could easily have just said they couldn't sell it) .. I only asked if you thought Microsoft were in violation of those laws ;)
(that said, there's a completely different wind blowing through the EU lately surrounding US spying .. so who knows)
« Last Edit: November 09, 2015, 02:59:47 pm by PCNetSpec »
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Offline emegra

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Re: Are Microsoft violating Sections 1 and 3 of the Computer Misuse Act 1990 ?
« Reply #14 on: November 09, 2015, 03:20:28 pm »
Quote
I only asked if you thought Microsoft were in violation of those laws

Short answer  YES



Graeme
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