Some torrent trackers are banning Windows 10 due to privacy concerns

By Shawn Knight
Aug 24, 2015
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  1. Microsoft has fielded its fair share of criticism regarding the service agreement that accompanies Windows 10. Of particular interest is a sentence that gives Microsoft the right to automatically download software updates or configuration changes that would prevent people from playing counterfeit games.

    The line in question is as follows:

    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 unauthorized hardware peripheral devices.

    Read literally, one could surmise that Microsoft does indeed have the power to scan your local storage and disable or otherwise delete pirated material. As TorrentFreak points out, the actuality is far less ominous than it initially seems.

    For starters, the policy isn’t limited to Windows 10 as it covers a number of Microsoft services. What’s more, it’s almost a certainty that the bit about playing counterfeit games is referring to the company’s own properties (like Xbox). There’s no indication that Microsoft is planning to disable pirated third-party titles.

    Nevertheless, the policy has many in the torrent industry worried. The publication said it has received multiple reports of private trackers including iTS banning those using Windows 10 with other considering it.

    iTS is also concerned with Microsoft’s partnership with MarkMonitor, an entity it describes as an anti-piracy company. It is iTS’ belief that Windows 10 captures the contents of your local disks and sends that information to partners like MarkMonitor.

    Multiple publications have debunked this myth as there isn’t yet any evidence to suggest such behavior. That’s not to say it isn’t plausible but there’s just no proof to back up that claim at this point.

    And as TorrentFreak concludes, many of Windows 10’s invasive behaviors can be disabled simply by configuring the OS properly. The same can also be said about the wealth of other companies and products that harvest information from its users such as Facebook.

    As I always say, in today’s day and age, it’s safe to assume that anything you do digitally can be traced back to you.

    Permalink to story.

  2. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 6,350   +1,945

    Of course W10 tracks our every move, I mean M$ are virtually giving it away for free so they want something in return, after all "generosity" isn't exactly in their DNA makeup.
    feathers632 likes this.
  3. Night Hacker

    Night Hacker TS Enthusiast Posts: 125   +20

    So if I'm not stealing software or movies, what do I have to worry about? I pay for all the games I play, if it's good enough to play, it's good enough to play. Seems like the only ones worried about this are the thieves.

    With that said, I am a little concerned with what information they would gather, but then again I use Facebook and most of my posts on there are public so... if I am not worried about that, than I am not worried about them knowing about the legal software and movies I use.
    stewi0001 and gamoniac like this.
  4. Night Hacker

    Night Hacker TS Enthusiast Posts: 125   +20

    Oops... that should read: if it's good enough to play, it's good enough to PAY. (no edit feature on here yet? This is 2015 right? ;) )
  5. Steve

    Steve TechSpot Editor Posts: 2,189   +1,219

    Click jump to forum mode.
  6. drjekelmrhyde

    drjekelmrhyde TS Booster Posts: 188   +43

    Microsoft don't give a single shiat what's on your computer. They aren't even flagging cracked copies of their Office. This is about what goes on in the STORE. It's because some jerk reworked someone's paid app and gave it out for free.
  7. AvalonMD

    AvalonMD TS Enthusiast Posts: 36   +42

    See what I did there? That model can be applied to ANY company that has an online presence these days. If you use Google, Facebook, or any service that exists online you have a profile somewhere, no matter how much you "think" you know what you're doing to avoid it. In fact your attempts to avoid probably attract more attention. If you use the likes of G$$gle, then no one can complain about privacy, that would just make them a hypocrite. As the internet becomes more pervasive it will indeed become more invasive as more and more people and companies go fully online.

    Besides, if you want to blame anyone for this new business model that Microsoft has adopted, you don't have far to look. Try the mirror, the prime suspect will be staring back at you. How do I come to that conclusion? Well, do you make use of G$$gle and other free services? Have you used Microsofts paid for services less as a result? Do you pirate software? If you answered yes to those questions, then you are absolutely to blame for the shifting business model. Do you think Microsoft would have changed a working model, a model that has been making them money for years if the weren't forced to do so by all the masses of people seeking out FREE stuff? Well, its not really free, after all you just had to sell your online identity to G$$gles advertising wing.
    Teko03 likes this.
  8. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 8,430   +2,822

    I think what you mean is the lack of complaint toward any one company would make them a hypocrite. The complete absence of complaint would make for irresponsibility.
  9. Nobina

    Nobina TS Evangelist Posts: 808   +273

    Well it's free only for the first year and previous versions of Windows were also tracking you and had to pay for them from the start. I'm curious about how much of that info they gather is actually used to help you improve your experience.
  10. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 8,430   +2,822

    As of late, my experience has not been improving.
  11. Nobina

    Nobina TS Evangelist Posts: 808   +273

    Pretty much what I thought.
  12. feathers632

    feathers632 TS Member Posts: 59   +14

    I think I'm not to blame. I'm blaming you. I think you're trying to divert the blame on to me to cover your own tracks.

    Normally I am first in line for new windows version but I have changed my mind about early adoption of 10. I like what I've read about the new DX12 features but I also need to be sure 10 works with my 3d rendering software. I'm sure it does but I'm still going to hold off upgrading for now.
    cliffordcooley likes this.
  13. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 8,430   +2,822

    A little precaution is always for the best, especially on a business machine.
    feathers632 likes this.
  14. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 6,350   +1,945

    Yup, but Win 10 sounds like it's a lot more invasive than all previous versions.
    Darth Shiv likes this.
  15. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 6,350   +1,945

    All these tech giants are tarred with the same brush and they are all just as invasive as the next one.
  16. Teko03

    Teko03 TS Maniac Posts: 304   +105

    True, but this is a model that Google & Apple have created. Digital assistants, providing information by location, tracking packages/flights by checking your e-mail, etc. The thing is, this information is being used to create a context aware user experience and for research to make speech, UX and UI improvements within the OS for feature updates. The only "advertisement" you're receiving is Windows Store app recommendations in the Start Menu --- something that's easily disabled. Google is the company KNOWN to make money from your data.
  17. Nobina

    Nobina TS Evangelist Posts: 808   +273

    Yeah it's a bit more invasive but a lot more transparent about it than in the previous versions of Windows, that's why you hear about it so much. Now even Windows 7 and 8 will recieve telemetry and whatnot so it will basically be the same.
  18. feathers632

    feathers632 TS Member Posts: 59   +14

    I could always install it on a spare SSD. If I wipe some games and porn first.
  19. thelatestmodel

    thelatestmodel TS Enthusiast Posts: 85   +20

    Some torrent trackers haven't got a clue what they're talking about. Seems some people heard the (false) rumour that Microsoft could look for pirated software on your system, and took it to absurd levels. This is just straight up paranoia.
  20. Darth Shiv

    Darth Shiv TS Evangelist Posts: 1,604   +370

    That's great... for a consumer OS. But once again, it's terrible for a business OS.
    drahken likes this.
  21. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 6,350   +1,945

    It's not great for anybody, apart from advertisers.
  22. infiltrator

    infiltrator TS Booster Posts: 140   +21

    I have my own private storage cloud that doesn't run on Windows OS. So you won't be finding anything on my local hard drive. Plus, everything that's on my private cloud is encrypted. So I doubt, you will be able to scan any of my porn.
  23. Darth Shiv

    Darth Shiv TS Evangelist Posts: 1,604   +370

    Ok yes you are right :cool:

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