Liverpool and Birmingham described as "piracy hotspots"

Microsoft outs UK resellers for counterfeit goods

21 independent British computer stores have appeared on a list of resellers compiled by Microsoft following a probe into counterfeit goods.

The list appears to relate to resellers that loaded pirate Microsoft products onto the hard drives of computer systems sold on to unsuspecting buyers.

Michala Wardell, head of anti-piracy at Microsoft UK, said that many of the buyers were unaware that the product being sold was not genuine. Wardell said that the piracy hotspots further suggested that the counterfeit trade was meeting demand from student populations however half of the list is based in middle England with six of the resellers from Birmingham and five from Liverpool.

The use of so-called "whistleblowers", presumably via the the Microsoft notification system informing the unsuspecting customers that their software is not genuine, also unveiled a small number of eBay traders selling software illegally. 

Microsoft says most traders agreed to settle, presumably the terms of which were more attractive than an ongoing legal battle with the software giant, even if it meant agreeing to appear in the hall of shame. With Microsoft’s goal clearly one of deterrent in the main, publishing the list will certainly serve as a warning to other would-be resellers of counterfeit software.

Resellers named by Microsoft:

Computer Services Repair, Birmingham 

Marsh Computers High Tech Trading, Kent 

B’N’I Computers, Birmingham 

Morely Computers, Leeds 

Discovery Computers, Birmingham 

South Liverpool PC Repair, Leeds 

Gemini Computers, Birmingham 

Smithdown Computers, Liverpool 

Bytesize Solutions, Birmingham 

TC Links, Liverpool 

Discount Computer Warehouse, Birmingham 

SXC Industries Ltd t/a Stockxchange, Liverpool 

Computer Resale, Chesterfield 

Avesta UK Ltd, Manchester 

Quest Computers, Gosport 

KBR Computers, Merseyside 

Surf-IT Computers, Hampshire 

Jupiter IT, Merseyside 

Exel Computers, Sheffield 

Clarion Computers, Swansea 

MCS Computers, Teeside

eBay sellers:

Little Laptop Shop eBay, aka recovery_dvds 

Custom PC Shop 

Fizz Time, aka Electricbuy 

Snowdon Computers

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