Microsoft suing UK retailer Comet for allegedly selling counterfeit CDs

4 Jan 2012

Microsoft is suing UK electronics retailer Comet, claiming it created and sold more than 94,000 counterfeit Windows Vista and Windows XP recovery CDs to customers.

According to Microsoft, these alleged counterfeit CDs were sold to customers who bought PCs and laptops loaded with the Windows OS.

The lawsuit, filed by Microsoft in the UK, claims Comet produced counterfeit CDs in a factory in Hampshire. Microsoft said the alleged counterfeits were then sold to “unsuspecting customers” in Comet retail stores across the UK.

“Comet’s actions were unfair to customers. We expect better from retailers of Microsoft products — and our customers deserve better, too,” said David Finn, associate general counsel of Worldwide Anti-Piracy and Anti-Counterfeiting at Microsoft.

Microsoft also advised customers who are unsure if they were sold counterfeit software to visit the company’s How To Tell site to learn more and report the software to Microsoft if it’s suspicious.

Comet has 248 stores in the UK with 10,000 employees. Its sales were down almost 20pc for the first half of the financial year. It’s currently owned by Kesa Electricals which is reportedly selling the retail chain to OpCapita for just stg£2. Kesa Electricals also had to invest stg£50m into Comet and retain pension liabilities in this deal.