Genuine Software Initiative
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Genuine Software Initiative

As part of Microsoft’s commitment to help protect consumers and resellers from counterfeit software and other forms of software piracy, the Genuine Software Initiative (GSI) will focus on the company’s many activities and investments directed at combating software counterfeiting and other forms of software piracy into a single coordinated effort. The initiative will focus increasing investments across three strategic areas: education, engineering and enforcement...
​Local News and Announcements
Pilipinas Anti – Piracy Team (PAPT) comprising National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) seized computers loaded with unauthorized copies of software during a recent inspection of Easy PC Computer stores in Makati and Parañaque City. A Lenovo laptop, an Acer Laptop, 3 unbranded desktop and 2 USB with infringing copies of various unauthorized copies of various Microsoft programs.
Authorities from the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) has conducted a raid on a call center in Bacoor, Cavite suspected of using unlicensed software. They have seized hundreds of computers that will undergo forensic examination for further evidence. TaskUs faces charges for violating copyright infringement under Republic Act 8293.
Pilipinas Anti – Piracy Team (PAPT) comprising National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) seized computers loaded with unauthorized copies of software during a recent inspection of computer repair stores in Gilmore, Quezon City. It has been said that seven out of ten computers with counterfeit software is infected with malware that could potentially lead to stolen online bank records, spreading of viruses to relatives, or even your PC could be vulnerable to other attacks. The technicians involved in the illegal installations were arrested by the NBI and face criminal prosecutions.
John Ernest Connecting Continents (JECC), issued a public apology last February for using infringing copies of Microsoft Windows and Microsoft Office in their operation where it has breached the Philippines’ Intellectual Property Code (Republic Act No. 8293).
The Pilipinas Anti-Piracy Team (PAPT) has announced that this May they will be inspecting businesses and establishments to ensure that they are using only legal and licensed software. Violators will be reprimanded and run the risk of business closure, revocation of US travel visas and other criminal charges.
Microsoft, during its launch of the Play It Safe Campaign has released a joint study by IDC and National University of Singapore of the prevalence of malware in pirated software and in new PCs purchased through traditional PC sellers. The study furthermore discusses the link between malwares and cyber-security breaches.
The Pilipinas Anti–Piracy Team (PAPT) composed of the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL), Philippine National Police (PNP), Optical Media Board (OMB), and the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) has successfully conducted a crackdown operations across Manila, Pampanga and Bulacan and found several businesses using unauthorized software.
The Pilipinas Anti-Piracy Team (PAPT) has announced that this November they will be inspecting businesses and establishments to ensure that they are using only legal and licensed software. Violators will be reprimanded and run the risk of business closure, revocation of US travel visas and other criminal charges.
Anti-piracy groups want the Philippines reinstated in the US government’s list of notorious markets, citing continuous sales of fake products in a number of shopping hubs.
The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) has raided 3 popular retail stores – Microstation Computer Center Inc. in Quezon City, Starapple Computer Corporation in Makati City and PC Chain Superstores in Muntinlupa City for selling pirated software along with the hardware. Owners and employees of these shops can face possible criminal charges.
Based on the recently concluded anti-piracy activities with some businesses in Metro South and Visayas, only 1.7% of these companies agreed to respond and voluntarily provided inventory of their software licenses. 
John Ernest Connecting Continents (JECC), a business processing and outsourcing company, was raided by the National Bureau of Investigation after receiving a software piracy report. Seized were P16M worth of pirated software. 
The Federal Bureau of Investigation in the US has announced the real possibility that illegally copied software, including counterfeit products made to look authentic, could contain malware. According to the FBI’s investigation, the inferior and infected software may not work properly or might fail to receive critical updates. But the greater danger comes from potential exposure to criminal activity—like identity theft and financial fraud—after malware takes hold of your system. 
The Pilipinas Anti-Piracy Team (PAPT) recently took its anti-piracy drive in the Visayas region and found unlicensed software being used in three businesses in Cebu and 21 sacks of assorted pirated cds in three retail malls. 
Find everything you need to know about the risks of piracy and how to protect your PC. You can start by learning about the 6 major risks of using pirated software – You are being watched, Your data could be deleted, Your money could be stolen, Your PC could be vulnerable, Your warranty could be voided, You could be spreading viruses.
The Open Computing Alliance (OCA), recently conducted a seminar for Cebu – based exporters, citing new developments in US Unfair Competition laws requiring US trading partners to use only legitimate software in carrying out their manufacturing and commercial activities. It was said that being subjected to charges of unfair competition could reduce the opportunities for Philippine exporters in supplying the United States which has been a big market for Philippine made products.
The Pilipinas Anti-Piracy Team (PAPT), led by the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) and the Optical Media Board (OMB), visited nine (9) companies in Southern Luzon areas of Batangas and Laguna last month to inspect software usage and licenses. They also announced that businesses in the Visayas region will be visited next, and that they should standardize on genuine now.
The Pilipinas Anti-Piracy Team (PAPT) has announced that they will be conducting another round of inspections in June in the Visayas area to clamp down on businesses and establishments that continue to sell or use pirated software.
The Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) has announced that they will be conducting customer visits after the elections this May to continue the enforcement efforts in Metro South. Key areas that could be visited include Paranaque, Las Pinas, Muntinlupa, Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Quezon, Bicol and Mindoro. Do remind your customers to make sure they are compliant and not exposed to risks of using unlicensed software.
The Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) has partnered with other IP stakeholders – US Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), Dept. of Trade & Industry (DTI), Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), Dept. of Foreign Affairs (DFA) and Bureau of Immigration (BI) - to strengthen ...
Filipino exporters are warned that they could be subjected to charges in the United States for violation of US Competition Law if proven that they are using pirated information-technology in producing their merchandise. This could reduce the opportunities for Philippine exporters in supplying the US, which has been a big market for Philippine-made products.
The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) conducted a raid recently and confiscated 14 computer units with pirated software believed to be worth around Php15 Million. Charges of violation of copyright infringement under the Intellectual Property Code of the Philippines are being arranged against the owners of ADS Autodraft Steel Detailing Services Inc.
The Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Director General Alan LM Purisima officially activated the PNP Anti-Cyber Group (PNP-ACG) which will be the sole PNP unit tasked to spearhead the enforcement of laws on cybercrimes and the PNP’s anti-cybercrime campaign.
A new global study commissioned by Microsoft and conducted by IDC on the effects of malware found in pirated software discovered that the chances of infection by unexpected malware are one in three for consumers and three in 10 for businesses. The study analyzed 270 websites and peer-to-peer (P2P) networks, 108 software downloads, and 155 CDs or DVDs. Embedding counterfeit software with dangerous malware is a new method for criminals to prey on computer users who are unaware of the potential danger.
The Pilipinas Anti-Piracy Team (PAPT), again led by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), recently conducted raids on computer retail stores at well-known malls in Muntinlupa City and Las Piñas. Among the establishments where the contaminated PCs were found were Compex Alabang and PC Gadget & Mobile Hub both located at the Festival Supermarket in Alabang, Muntinlupa City, and Silicon Valley at the SM Southmall found in Las Piñas City.
The study covered the samples (Name Branded PCs & DVDs) collected from 5 SEA countries, namely, Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam and Malaysia, and tested by our commercial technology services team, based out of Taiwan. The study led to some alarming findings:
  • 69% of the PCs sampled were infected with malicious software at the point of sale
  • 97% of the PCs sampled had deliberate security vulnerabilities that expose consumers to significant security risks (firewall rules change)
  • 33% of the PCs sampled were sold with altered browser default settings, often directing consumers to scam or “phishing” websites
  • 28% of the PCs sampled were found to be sold, unknown to the customer, with their original hard disks (HDD) swapped with another HDD
At the recent 2nd Philippine Anti-Piracy and Counterfeiting Summit, US Homeland Security Investigations assistant attaché Mitchell Worley cited US President Barack Obama’s commitment in ensuring a level-playing field by not tolerating unfair business practices such as piracy and counterfeiting and keeping software criminals out of the US as software piracy is considered a crime. The hold departure order for IPR violators issued by the regional trial court will propel Anti-Piracy initiatives in the Philippines. Even as criminal cases are still being litigated against suspected software pirates, they run the risk of not being able to travel to popular business and tourism destinations for Filipinos such as Hong Kong, Singapore, Bangkok and beyond to the US and European countries. For Filipino businessmen, this will mean a major drawback not just for their business but for them personally.
In a 2013 Special 301 Report of the US Trade Representative, IIPA noted the Philippines’ positive progress in several key areas for the protection of creative content. The political will of the government to tackle piracy and create space for legitimate creative business to grow are two major achievement done in the past two years. The group also lauded Ricardo Blancaflor, director-general of the IP Office of the Philippines (IPO), and Optical Media Board (OMB) chairman Ronnie Ricketts for taking novel and effective approaches to dealing with piracy in the Philippines and further modernizing protection.
The Pilipinas Anti-Piracy Team has announced that beginning of February 2013 they will be inspecting businesses and reseller establishments located in Paranaque, Las Pinas, Muntinlupa, Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Quezon, Bicol and Mindoro to determine whether the software they are using or selling are genuine and original. Be prepared, and remind your customers to have their licenses in order too.
The Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) will be strengthening the enforcement on intellectual property rights (IPR) this year, working with the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to run after vendors of counterfeit and pirated items. The IPOPHL mentioned that one of its priorities this year is pushing for increased respect for IP. The BIR will be going after IP violators, along with the IPOPHL and the DTI will be stopping the proliferation of counterfeit or pirated goods.
The US Homeland Security Investigations (HIS) has partnered with the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) and could enforce punitive actions that may include criminal prosecution or administrative sanctions or both that could affect eligibility for travel to United States.
The Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) reported that the government agencies, which included the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), Optical Media Board (OMB), Philippine National Police (PNP) and Bureau of Customs (BOC), seized P4.988 Billion worth of counterfeit products in the first 11 months of 2012.
A recent study made by Grey Group Asia indicated an increase of online shoppers in the Philippines. With the growing number of online shopping sites that offer great, cost-efficient deals, Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines Director General Ricardo Blancaflor reminded consumers to be more vigilant when shopping online by making sure that they use genuine software. Doing so will give them security they need when sharing personal information.
The Pilipinas Anti-Piracy Team, joined by US law enforcement officials from US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and Homeland Security Investigations (HIS), recently conducted a crackdown on various retail shops in Metro Manila confiscating pirated discs valued at P70 Million. Included in the malls raided were Tutuban Center Mall, University Mall, Isetann, Metro Market! Market!, and Marikina Riverbanks. Estimated at 28,000 copies of counterfeit disc were seized which contains movies, games, music, and computer programs, many of which are Microsoft products such as various versions of Windows, Office, Visual Studio, MS Office Project, SQL Server and even Xbox games. In another development, the Anti-Fraud and Commercial Crime Division (AFCCD) of the Philippines National Police (PNP) on December 12, 2012 executed successful raids against two retailers engaged in hardloading. Caught were OWTEL SHOP and/or ASIARICH TRADING CORP., located at Starmall, Mandaluyong City where 1 Samsung NC210-A02 netbook containing unauthorized Microsoft Office Enterprise 2007 was seized and THINK PC INC., located at Gilmore I.T. Center, Quezon City, where 1 Acer Aspire ZQT laptop, 1 Lenovo S10-3 and 1 Neo B3363N netbooks containing a total of 2 infringing copies of Windows 7 Ultimate and3 infringing copies of Microsoft Office 2007 Enterprise were seized, in addition to the confiscation of 2 external drives, 1 thumb drive and 2 discs, all of which were found to contain numerous infringing Microsoft software.
With Windows® 8 entering the marketplace, we are excited to share our most advanced operating system for business PCs. Windows® 8 Pro is designed to fit one’s lifestyle and engineered to get one’s work done. It delivers all the benefits of Windows 8, plus new levels of productivity, security, and mobility; all without sacrificing performance or choice. As a valued Microsoft partner, we want to make sure you are taking advantage of this advancement. Read these key points to help you sell Windows® 8 Pro.
All Bankers agreed that using pirated software increases the risk for online transactions. The effectiveness of a security program could be diluted, which would impact the overall safety of net banking. Even if a consumer installs an anti-virus program it cannot remove the viruses under a pirated software environment.
The AP Quarterly Industry Trends Report is your source for a quarterly snapshot of key Anti-Piracy trends. The report can be utilized to provide background knowledge on various trends when pitching media targets or in preparation for executive visits. Four key trends were prevalent in media coverage across the Anti-Piracy industry in FY13 Q1. The majority of the discussion related to cloud computing and its influence on piracy. Additional trends that emerged tied to piracy as it related to standalone organizations, as well as specific regions.
The Business Software Alliance made public its new brand identity reflecting a strategic alignment of its operations and the transformative impact of software on every aspect of modern life. The organization will be known as BSA | The Software Alliance which has aligned its operations around integrated advocacy initiatives and expanded Anti-Piracy programs that deliver strategic value to its member companies as they continue innovating and the marketplace rapidly evolving.
With the launch of Windows 8, we are excited to announce several offers that have been made available for end consumers and small business customers as well as to provide insight into some important licensing requirements. The purpose of this communication is to give you more information about these great offers as well as licensing changes so that you can discuss them with your customers.
The government has released a manual that will serve as guidance for prosecutors and investigators in handling intellectual property (IP) cases. The objective of the manual is to standardize procedural guidelines in the investigation and prosecution of IP cases, as well as increasing awareness and understanding of IP laws and procedures among prosecutors, law enforcers and the general public.
Starting October 2012, Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) will be visiting companies in the South of Metro Manila, Laguna, Batangas and Cavite and doing surveys on the software usage of these firms in order to help ensure that they are compliant. The agency will also conduct educational campaigns aimed to minimize the number of software piracy in the country.
A Product Key card is another way to purchase Microsoft Office 2010 with a new PC from your preferred retailer. It includes a Product Key designed to activate Office 2010 preloaded on a PC. The license is not transferrable and is licensed for one installation on one computer only.
As the piracy rate in the Philippines is at a high 70%, the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) a member of Pilipinas Anti-Piracy Team, the lead agency tasked in upholding intellectual property rights. IPOPHL will make companies realize that they must respect copyrights of the makers of the products they are using, just as they should expect other companies to respect their copyrights and trademarks. Prior to the visit, IPOPHL will be writing to different business establishments to invite them to have their software surveyed by authorized IPOPHL representatives.
The Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) together with Business Software Alliance (BSA) has launched another campaign last August 16. It seeks to educate business on the benefits to be derived from using licensed software and the risks from using pirated ones. Local companies and reseller will be encouraged to have their software usage surveyed by the government lead agency on IP rights to confirm if they are using licensed software or not.
The Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) has announced that starting October 2012, it will be conducting educational visits on companies and retail stores in the areas of South Metro Manila, Laguna, Batangas and Cavite. In connection with this, Microsoft is reminding all businesses to make sure they are compliant and use only genuine software, and all resellers to sell only genuine software purchased through Microsoft’s authorized distributors. Companies and resellers should not expose themselves to unnecessary legal risks due to violations of the Intellectual Property Code of the Philippines.
Seven out of 10 software programs installed in computers in the Philippines are unlicensed, resulting to losses of P14.6 billion in 2011, the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) on Thursday said during the launch of its educational campaign geared at addressing high software piracy rate. Citing data from the International Data Corporation, IPOPHL Director General Ricardo Blancaflor said that software piracy in the Philippines increased to 70 percent in 2011 from 69 percent in 2010.
Two (2) technicians of PC Live and Premium Logic, both located at SM Megamall in Mandaluyong City, have apologized for installing pirated software such as Windows 7 and Microsoft Office on Lenovo computers. These technicians have since been asked to leave their respective companies. This serves as a reminder to retail employees not to violate Intellectual Property Rights so as not to put their means of livelihood at risk. Hard disk loading is a crime.
The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), a member of the Pilipinas Anti-Piracy Team (PAPT), nabs hard disk loaders of Lenovo computers at SM Megamall. Chief Rommel Vallejo of NBI IPRD warns computer stores to stop illegal practice.
The National Bureau of Investigation raided two (2) well-known retail stores at SM Megamall for hard disk loading. Caught were technicians of PC LIVE and PREMIUM LOGIC, both located at 4/F Cyberzone Area, SM Megamall, Building B, Julia Vargas Avenue 1550, Mandaluyong City. Seized from both stores were Lenovo laptop, a desktop and three hard drives, all of which contained unauthorized copies of Microsoft programs such as Windows 7 and Office.
A night of stars gathered at Salon De Ning of The Peninsula Manila last June 27, 2012 as Microsoft unveiled the winners of the Star Partner program. Among the 200 participating stores nationwide, Octagon branch in Park Square Makati was hailed as the Star Partner Store of the Year while Complink at SM North Edsa was awarded the top store for the fourth quarter. The winners received a Mitsubishi L200 van and a Honda Motorcycle respectively. Recognition was also given to Accent Micro’s Jeffrey Alvaro of the Lenovo Concept Store in SM Megamall as the Ultimate RSP Champion of the Year. The Star Partner is a year-long program for participating managed partners & named accounts of Microsoft. Winners are measured based on partner’s quarter sales performance, attach rate, in-store point of sale materials displays and selling genuine Windows 7 and Office 2010. (Read Article for the full list of winners)
The Philippines' piracy rate even went up a percentage point to 70% in 2011, from 69% in the past 4 years. The Philippines ranks 12th in software piracy rate among Asia-Pacific countries. The commercial value of this piracy was $338 million or approximately P14.6 billion.
The PAPT, led by the Optical Media Board (OMB), inspected several companies in the provinces of Negros Oriental and Bohol such as schools, hospitals financial institutions and internet cafes, and discovered about 700 violations on software piracy.
The US Trade Representative Office (USTR) retains the Philippines in the watch list of countries deemed deficient in protecting intellectual Property Rights (IPR).
The Pilipinas Anti-Piracy Team (PAPT) led by the Optical Media Board (OMB) inspected major malls in North Luzon – SM City Pampanga in San Fernando, SM City Clark, Marquee Mall and Robinson’s Place in Angeles City – for their continued fight against software piracy. Several stores selling branded laptops that included Acer, Asus, Dell, HP, Lenovo and Samsung have been found with probable unlicensed software during the sweep. More than 100 pirated software installers allegedly used by computer retail stores were confiscated.
The Pilipinas Anti-Piracy Team (PAPT) led by the Optical Media Board (OMB) also inspected companies such as banks, schools, manufacturing, service and other commercial establishments, including those in economic zones in North Luzon following a 30-day countdown of announcements in local newspapers. The companies that were suspected of having unlicensed software were asked to submit documents to the OMB to prove that they were compliant.
Microsoft has been receiving numerous reports of rampant mis-licensing in the channel, where OEM licenses are being sold separately from a Computer System. Mr. John Bessey reminds the partners that even the customers could be dragged into these situations which may cause serious CPE issues. Customers who may be audited by Microsoft or its auditors will be made to rectify mis-licensing situations, which could result to unplanned and unbudgeted purchases.
Microsoft recently announced PC Worx of SM Megamall as the Star Partner Store of the Quarter besting 180 participating stores nationwide. PC Worx received a Honda Motorcycle as their prize at the end of the event. The top honor was announced last April 25, 2012 in a recognition night held at Spicy Finger’s Bar and Restaurant at Greenbelt 2. The Star Partner is a year-long program for participating managed partners & named accounts of Microsoft. Winners are measured based on partner’s quarter sales performance, attach rate, in-store point of sale materials displays and selling genuine Windows 7 and Office 2010.
The Business Software Alliance (BSA) cites the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) for having strong dedication in promoting respect for intellectual property rights. But they also declared that the growth of software and information technology industry and the Philippine economy in general has been impeded by the continuing high rate of software piracy in the country.
When you bring into the country illegally acquired Microsoft products or “grey”, your company is risking possible violations of the Tariff and Customs Code which include penalties for failure to pay the correct duties and taxes on imported goods ranging from 50% to 800% of the amount of basic deficiency duties and value-added tax accrued on the importation, imprisonment ranging from 2 to 8 years, and possible forfeiture of these products by the Government.
After successful campaigns last 2011, the Pilipinas Anti - Piracy Team (PAPT) is gearing up to an even more intensive drive this year by homing in on Northern Luzon and Central Visayas, with inspections on business establishments suspected of using unlicensed software commencing.
The Philippines will be kept on the USTR’s Special 301 Watch list for 2011, a watch list of nations where pirated and counterfeit goods are readily available. While the USTR recently lauded recently-passed legislation aimed at illegal video recording at movie theatres, the agency also lamented weaknesses within the judiciary system that lead to limited enforcement of Intellectual Property laws.
David French, a senior Canadian patent attorney with 35 years of experience, discussed the importance to a company of protecting its IP.
Retail stores are helping us increase awareness on the value of using Genuine Software. Indicating the risks involved such as No Security Updates, a fine of up to Php 500,000 and possible jail time of up to 9 years for those who are caught using pirated software, makes a user think twice before pirating.
Last February 6, 2012, PAPT announced in different newspapers that they will conduct raids and inspections of business in Northern Luzon and Central Visayas that are suspected of using and selling pirated and unlicensed software.
Microsoft had sent another round of Mystery Shoppers this quarter to various stores all over the Philippines. As in the past, those caught offering illegal software will be qualified as “Failed”, and the retail store branch manager will be sent a warning letter to review the ongoing selling activities in their premises to make sure that there are no laws that are possibly violated.
PCS-CTS, has agreed to pay $500,000 to the Business Software Alliance (BSA) to settle claims that it had unlicensed copies of Adobe, Filemaker, Microsoft and Symantec software installed on its computers. BSA was alerted to the unlicensed software use by a confidential report made on its website The settlement announced with PCS-CTS is the largest BSA settlement in Texas to date.
DILG Secretary Jesse Robredo advises OMB Chairman Ronnie to seek the help of local government units in enforcing intellectual property rights throughout the Philippines.
A technician working for a reseller in Trinoma Mall was caught hard disk loading by the Pilipinas Anti-Piracy Team (PAPT) headed by the Optical Media Board (OMB) and the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) in a retail crackdown held last December 2011. This should serve as a reminder to all reseller owners and employees to sell only genuine Microsoft software.
Last January 19, 2012, Microsoft celebrated with the partner community the winners of the Star Partner Program for First and Second Quarter, FY12. Major winners were Proton Octagon, SM North EDSA for Q1 Star Partner Store and Toshiba Concept Store, SM Megamall for Q2 Star Partner Store. Winners of the Merchandising Contest were TCA V-Mall and PC Gilmore. The Top Retail Sales Persons were Raquel Ann Villano of Complink for Q1 and Aaron Bendana of the Asus Concept Store for Q2. The Star Partner Genuine Award Winner is Electroworld.