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It truly is the Evil Empire.

Microsoft has this automatic update service. Which is good, in that you don't have to bother with patching bugriddled Windows. Except that a recent automatic update includes spyware with the name Windows Genuine Advantage (WGA). That's 'advantage' as in Microsoft's advantage and 'genuine' as in genuine scumbags.

What WGA does is report back to Microsoft every time you turn your computer on about whether you are using inappropriate software.

Recon-gure your firewall to watch it secretly dial out.

And you can't easily eradicate it. The Evil Empire slithers its oily tentacles into the intimate recesses of the operating system you paid for and relays back the details to MSHQ (http: // tinyurl. co. uk/pjjv has a reasoned discussion).

Oh, sorry, it's a 'copyright' and 'security' measure.

Except now there is a worm, Cuebot-KA, which poses as WGA. A Macwielding mate smugly noted how especially offensive is WGA when your software is pukka: every day Microsoft gives you permission to use your own programs. Roll on Linux, or even OSX. Apple has denied doing something similar with iTunes. We know what that means.

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