Alarm raised over online trade in cheap Microsoft licenses

News 4 May, 2012

Software giant's volume licensing price hikes could put firms at risk of unscrupulous online traders, it is claimed.

Organisations hoping to sidestep Microsoft’s volume licensing price hikes by purchasing them from overseas and online merchants could find themselves in breach of software licensing laws.

This is the view of Andy Trish, managing director of Microsoft reseller partner NCI Technologies, who has repeatedly warned the software giant against pushing ahead with its plan to align its pricing with the Euro.

When costs go up in the UK, you won’t be able to purchase them from overseas because they will not be valid.

As reported by IT Pro earlier this week, some Microsoft users that purchase volume products after 1 July will have to pay up to a third (33.4 per cent) more to renew their software agreements with the firm.

These include firms that purchases licenses through Microsoft’s SPLA, Open Value Subscription and ISV Royalty programmes.

Meanwhile, companies that buy licenses through other programmes will be hit with price rises of between 7.5 and 26.7 per cent.

In a blog post , Trish said this could prompt users to source cheaper licenses from overseas, leaving them in breach of software licensing laws.

“Licensing is region specific. Even when the costs go up in the UK, you won’t be able to look elsewhere to purchase [licenses] as they will not be valid."

Firms should be wary of online merchants selling licenses at discount prices as they are also unlikely to be legal, he added.

“You may find Microsoft licensing much cheaper from some internet websites, [but] if you can buy it much cheaper from them than a Microsoft partner, the chances of that license being legal is very slim indeed,” he added.