Mexican drug cartel runs Microsoft counterfeiting operation

Office 2007 branded with La Familia cartel logo
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Microsoft showed off a copy of the firm's Office 2007 stamped with the logo of the Mexican 'La Familia' drug cartel at counterfeiting conference in Paris.

The counterfeit software was reportedly found for sale in Mexico and the La Familia cartel logo proved a link between the organised crime group and a growing counterfeiting operation, according to a Bloomberg report.

Accusations of La Familia piracy first appeared with a NY Times report last year describing the group's move into counterfeit software as a "low-risk, high-profit complement to drugs, bribery and kidnapping."

"This is the real side, the scary side of counterfeiting and it plagues the world," said Microsoft antipiracy lawyer David Finn, showing off the La Familia branded disk at Global Congress on Combating Counterfeiting and Piracy in Paris.

Finn also warned of the security dangers of using counterfeit software, claiming that 70 per cent of computers in China are infected with viruses and that this was a "direct result" of purchasing pirated and fake products, he said.

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