Hardcore Pirates Are Reportedly Banning Windows 10

Hardcore Pirates Are Reportedly Banning Windows 10

There’s casual Pirate Bay piracy, and then there’s private torrent trackers: members-only clubs that share the best movie and TV rips among themselves. As you’d expect, they tend to be pretty hardcore about privacy, enough so that some groups are banning members from using Windows 10.

As TorrentFreak reports, groups like iTS and FSC have been freaking out about the new Terms of Use for Windows 10 — specifically, the bits that let Microsoft scan your harddrive for counterfeit software or hardware. iTS instituted a ban starting last Thursday, explaining things with the following message:

Many of you might have heard or read about the terrible privacy policy of windows 10 recently. Unfortunately Microsoft decided to revoke any kind of data protection and submit whatever they can gather to not only themselves but also others. One of those is one of the largest anti-piracy company called MarkMonitor. Amongst other things windows 10 sends the contents of your local disks directly to one of their servers. Obviously this goes way too far and is a serious threat to sites like ours which is why we had to take measures. Since last thursday windows 10 is officially banned from iTS. Members using it get redirected to a video that eggsplains the dangers quite in detail hoping to enlighten as many people as possible.

Windows 10 has had some issues with over-sharing information, from sending Wi-Fi passwords to your contacts, to recording usage data like typing a little over-zealously. The worst over-step comes in the services agreement, a document that covers the use of Windows services like Cortana, Skype, or Xbox Live.

“We may automatically check your version of the software and download software updates or configuration changes, including those that prevent you from accessing the Services, playing counterfeit games, or using unauthorised hardware peripheral devices.”

If you read that with your tinfoil hat on, yes, you could probably conclude that Microsoft might be scanning your harddrive to look for a bootleg copy of Call of Duty. But it’s more likely that the language is there to cover Xbox services, which do look for counterfeit games.

More importantly, there’s no evidence that Microsoft is actually shipping details of your files and applications back to its servers for analysis. But all the facts in the world won’t matter if everyone’s so worked up about Microsoft stealing their information to actually use Windows.


This story originally appeared on Gizmodo Australia


    • Too bad windows 7 sends telemetry data just like windows 10 if you’ve kept it up to date

        • Don’t disable updates, they’re important. There’s no grand conspiracy to steal your files, nobody cares what’s on your computer. If you disable updates, you leave your PC open to remote execution. A lot of zombies in botnets (such as those used by Lizard Squad to DDOS websites) are computers that haven’t been updated in a while and have been compromised.

          • Exactly, Sure if you disable updates microsoft wont get your info, But now some criminal hacker in Russia will get all your info because you chose not to update and fix security flaws

    • Windows 7 is old news, get with the times already. Get over it. Move on. LET GO.
      Let me guess you’re a lame pirate too? LOL.

  • If pirates don’t want it, clearly something is wrong. Hopefully MS or someone else will release a way to get rid of all this NSA grade spyware.

      • I would say considering the previous versions of Windows were also free for them that this one has been the most costly.

    • there is nothing wrong with it, the privacy settings are no different to previous versions of windows. They are just falling for sensationalist media

  • ” let Microsoft scan your harddrive for counterfeit software or hardware ”
    ” Submits to one of the largest anti-piracy company called MarkMonitor ”

    No-one would believe me when I was saying it couple days ago on other sites,

    I noticed win 10 start deleting my .torrent files
    granted they had virus/cracked software… but that’s not the point… I saw it delete a torrent file 🙂

    Its going to get interesting, when files start to go missing all over the place due to ownerships

    • Yeah, that’s why I’m not upgrading. Microsoft deleting files without permission from me… That’s a bit too “big brother” for my tastes.

      • I found out how to turn off the scanner, I’m guessing its defender… it HAS to be done through group policy edit…
        no virus protection….. looks like its 3rd party then

        I knew MP3s were deleted in media player… this just takes it to a new level

        • Yeeeeeeah… Because that doesn’t look like Microsoft trying to take total control of peoples computers or anything. I can understand pirated Xbox or Windows games, or even software to some degree. But when mp3 files and other things start to be deleted without notice… That’s pretty screwed up.

          • hey don’t get me wrong I buy 95% of my games music and video… trying to do the right thing all the time

            I don’t want a BIT of my collections/archives of files going missing… for obvious reasons.
            besides that its just wrong and its getting stupid.

    • The reports are nonsense, as the source article points out. Microsoft isn’t deleting anything from your system unless it’s a virus, at which point it doesn’t matter if it’s a torrent or any other file, Defender treats it the same. I agree Defender should be quarantining and not deleting, but it’s a completely separate issue.

      Windows Media Player doesn’t delete anything either, I don’t know where you’ve heard that but it’s bunk too. For one, making a personal backup of a CD to MP3 is legal in the United States and several other jurisdictions, and secondly, even if a file is DRM protected and your license is missing or expired, all it does is tell you as much. The file itself isn’t deleted.

      This whole bout of paranoia came from a single line in the license terms, nothing else. Running a firewall and packet capture is trivial, there’s no evidence to date that Microsoft is sending any information about the contents of your hard drive anywhere without your knowledge.

    • Most if not all Anti-Virus programs these days will delete some files contained within Warez. Nothing special to do with windows 10. Same thing would happen on 8 or 7

    • Jesus Christ, that is nuts.
      Amongst other things windows 10 sends the contents of your local disks directly to one of their servers.
      Astounding that it can do that and that people are not in an outcry about it.

  • I’m sticking with Windows 7 till I have no choice but to upgrade. I’ve read through the privacy policy and I really don’t like what I was reading. So until someone can make a privacy patch for Windows 10, I’m in no hurry to switch over.

    Heck, I won’t even upgrade to Windows 8 or 8.1 because it’s too restrictive.

    • You do realise the same privacy things you worry about also exist in windows 7 and 8? Dont believe sensationalist media

  • I’m using Windows 8.1 (didn’t really have a choice) but I don’t mind it, I have used it enough now that I really like it although it DOES have some problems but nothing major for me. Windows 10 though. I upgraded, hated it and IMMEDIATELY reverted back.

    • Really? I found Windows 10 still has a few issues to work through but fixed 99% of the problems I had with 8/8.1
      Not ready to replace 7 on my personal PC yet but 10 is going great on my work laptop.

  • If windows is deleting only files acquired illegally then I have no problem with it. Piracy on PC is massive and needs to be shot down, these kids on the torrent sites write about freedom, and act like everything should be free, like the world owes them something.

    If windows is watching, and can make an impact as well as protect the user from leaking sensitive information such as wifi passwords, then I am all for it. I personally see it being no different to walking into a store with camera’s.

    If however Microsoft data farm with it and sell the information on, then they deserve every bit of bad publicity. Or if they do the same crap apple pulled were once you upload something to icloud it technically becomes theirs i.e. once you put something on your windows computer it becomes Microsoft.

    The internet is the wild west atm. hackers, pirates. Look how many times game servers and the likes are taken out because of the ass clowns. If stopping them means watching every inch go for it I say, just like in real life were most countries have a security camera every 3 feet.

    People cry about privacy and for a the very few who actually can mount the argument, I am happy to listen but most people have a cry and then continue to use social media and other services that flat out steel information every single day from them.

      • I was going to ask you to expand on why I am an idiot then read your username never mind lol.

    • Yes piracy is a serious problem because those multi million dollar corporations aren’t blood sucking every last penny from the smart working class man.

      • But is stealing it the right answer? Surly simply not buying the product is the right answer. I don’t support EA or Ubi and don’t pirate their games either.

        I also don’t support apple but that doesn’t mean I walk into a store and still an ipad… its the same thing as downloading a program from a “blood sucking” company that you don’t want to support. Two wrongs don’t make a right, your calling them out from being immoral then doing an immoral thing claiming its for a good cause. (not you personally)

        I am not white knighting here, as I said… if and that is a big if, if Microsoft is not selling the information on and actually trying to stop piracy and the likes, great!… if they are selling it on then they deserve everything they get.

        • I agree with you, stealing is not the answer and not supporting something is. I also won’t support ea, ubi and apple. I may also add microsoft to the list too. “Damn its starting to get long and i really wanna play mass effect3 and child of light.” But I don’t agree with the actions microsoft are taking because of a minority.

  • Yes i’ll just stick with win7 for the moment and eventually have a SteamOS/Linux dual boot.

  • So what the hell does “unauthorized hardware peripherals” mean? You have to use an official Microsoft mouse and keyboard?

  • Hahahaha, the comments from the tech illiterate in here are hilarious! They are exactly like 911 truthers.

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