By Olubunmi Adeniyi
Lagos. March 10, 2013: Microsoft Nigeria has raised alarm over the growing problem of counterfeit Windows software saying they may bear malware infections that can steal users’ vital details like credit card and bank information.
Emmanuel Onyeje, Country Manager, Microsoft who made this observation at a roundtable event to mark Microsoft Nigeria Play Fair Day held in Lagos last week to further intensify awareness on the dangers of purchasing pirated software.
The roundtable event tagged ‘Play It Safe’ featured journalists and panelists that include, Rita Amuchiena, Supplies Country Manager of Microsoft Nigeria; Emmanuel Onyeje, Microsoft Country Manager; David Olaniyan, a software Developer and 2011 Imagine Cup National Winner; Gabriel Afolayan, Movie Actor from the Nigerian entertainment industry and Seyi Owolabi, who represented Gozie Onumonu, Head of Piracy in Multichoice Nigeria.
Onyeje explains that using pirated software creates a one in three chance of downloading malware, one of the biggest scourge facing Internet users because of its enormous cyber threats.
According to a new study commissioned by Microsoft Corporation, although some computer users may actively seek pirated software in hopes of saving money, the chances of infection by unexpected malware are one in three for consumers and three in 10 for businesses.
As a result of these infections, the research shows that consumers will spend 1.5 billion hours and $22 billion identifying, repairing and recovering from the impact of malware while global enterprises will spend $114 billion to deal with the impact of a malware-induced cyber attacks.
In his comment, Onumonu, says that, “pirates are in every industry and this can constitute a clog in the wheel of the organisation.
According to him, in 2004, Multichoice had over 5,000 subscribers on their platform in Onitsha but as at now, it is less than 500 subscribers and this can be attributed to the activities of pirates.”
Speaking on piracy in the Nigerian terrain, he laments that “enforcement is very weak and procedures very slow whilst the judiciary system is another challenge, as most of them are not aware of what piracy is all about”.
Also among the panelist, Gabriel Afolayan who describe piracy in Nigeria as “war of ages” laments piracy now poses a huge problem for the Nigerian entertainment industry.
Movie producers now churn out poorer movies working with lower budget since there was “little to take home” from the previous big budget works, he adds.
According to Afolayan, “the mindset of the consumer is key to fighting the problem of piracy in the country. We need to create awareness and elicit morality in the public.”