Microsoft is combining its digital crimes unit and the software piracy unit to create one new Cybercrime Center, in a join effort to combat malware and software piracy. The Cybercrime Center will be located in Redmond Washington and allow the company to have just one single location to coordinate investigations with the government.
The Cybercrime Center will be staffed by 30 investigators, who will work closely with 70 other Microsoft investigators world-wide to combat malware, piracy, and technology-facilitated child exploitation. "Malicious code and nongenuine code go hand-in-hand, it's as simple as that," Microsoft's David Finn stated, the man in charge of the new Cybercrime Center. Finn has spend the last thirteen years leading piracy investigations for Microsoft from his Paris office. According to data from IDC, one third of software installed on computers worldwide as of 2011 was counterfeit, while 20% of Microsoft's Office productivity suite installed by businesses was counterfeit too. On top of it all, these counterfeit software had a one-in-three chance that they were likely to be infected with malware. "This is not a Doritos-munching, pajama-clad basement-dweller behind this. We're dealing with criminal enterprises," Finn explained.
For example, CD Cheap (based in Europe) was notorious for selling pirate versions of Windows and was generating over $3.9 million a month! Microsoft investigators were able to track the merchant accounts that processed online card transactions and law enforcement was able to shut down the pirates.