An insurance company in Guatemala is suing the software giant after Microsoft allegedly brought along armed police officers during a software piracy raid. The company, Seguros Universales, alleges that Microsoft did this during a raid back in April of 2012.
“Microsoft appeared with armed Guatemalan law enforcement officers and halted plaintiffs’ business operations. Microsoft then proceeded to extort Plaintiffs by demanding an on-the-spot agreement to pay $70,000 or Microsoft would remove all… servers containing ALL data and operational software,” the complaint stated. Obviously the plaintiffs were deeply upset since business operations were affected by the raid.
But wait, it gets worse. Seguros Universales is also alleging that Microsoft attempted to strong-arm other Guatemalan insurance firms into paying fines for software piracy on the spot. Microsoft, obviously, has a different story to tell.
“Seguras Universales confessed to a Guatemalan judge and prosecutor that it used illegal software and freely entered into an agreement to compensate Microsoft for its wrongdoing. This suit is a meritless attempt to distract from its own software piracy, and we look forward to addressing the claims,” Microsoft stated in response to the allegations.
Microsoft has been hard at work over the years to fight software piracy, especially when 79% of software in use in Guatemala is pirated (according to a 2011 survey). That survey even states that Latin America accounts for 61% of software in use being pirated rather than legally purchased.