Microsoft patents Windows 10 “kill switch” technology to deter piracy

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Windows 10 is one of Microsoft’s pride when it comes to the development of security. What many have forgotten, however, is that since launch there has been a feature in place to identify illegally contained content.

Now, the controversial anti-piracy tactics that Microsoft has placed into Windows 10 has recently seen light with the acceptance of its patent (via Digital Music News.) On April 4, the patent was officially approved for the Windows 10 Operating System to allow activation, potentially spelling trouble for those that want to share content illegally. As the patent spells out:

“Objects in a shared storage system can be marked as including prohibited content. Incidents that result in objects being so marked can be stored in an incident history associated with a user responsible for those objects. The incident history can be processed to identify repeat offenders and modify access privileges of those users. However, when objects are shared by one user with another user, prohibited content is blocked from being shared, while the remainder of the shared objects can be accessed by the other user.”

To put in standard terms, users that download or share illegal content on a regular basis will be flagged as offenders. Not to mention files received that aren’t original would not be accessible while running Windows 10.

The article makes a good point that Microsoft could opt to use the anti-piracy feature for its own Windows 10 OS, identifying and reporting pirated copies. But it could have the opportunity to be used on a broader scale if employed. Currently, we don’t know how Microsoft will utilize it or if at all, and no statement has been made.