German government plans to fund Microsoft malware bailout

Apple Online Store“With the economic crisis still being in full effect, Germany wants to throw government money at another industry giant. However, this time it is not an ailing car manufacturer, but the software producer Microsoft. The German Federal Office for Information Security (BSI) plans to team up with internet service providers (ISPs) to establish a call center helping malware-troubled Windows users,” Hendrik Weimer reports for Quantenblog.

“The project was announced today at the German IT summit in Stuttgart. Starting in 2010, ISPs will track down customers with infected PCs, e.g., by looking for communication with botnet controllers. These customers will then be directed to a special website offering advice on removing the malware. If this is unsuccessful (or the site is blocked by the malware), people will get access to a call center, where a staff of about 40 will try to fix the problem,” Weimer reports.

“SPIEGEL ONLINE reports that the BSI refused to disclose the costs for the project, citing procurement regulations,” Weimer reports.

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Not unbelievable, unfortunately.

It is not the function of our government to keep the citizen from falling into error; it is the function of the citizen to keep the government from falling into error. — Robert Houghwout Jackson

Government is not reason, it is not eloquence, it is force; like fire, a troublesome servant and a fearful master. Never for a moment should it be left to irresponsible action. — George Washington

The nine most dangerous words in the English language are “I’m from the government, and I’m here to help.” — Ronald Reagan

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Readers “Mark P.” and “NixoN” for the heads up.]

38 Comments

  1. Microsoft ought to be prosecuted for crimes against humanity. What a massive waste of time, productivity, and dollars Microsoft have wrought.

    It figures that the Germans want to misuse the people’s money to help Redmond continue fscking the ignorant when far better, much more cost effective solutions exist.

  2. I do not know how, but Microsoft has gotten at least one thing right. This is proof that they have the best sales force in the world.

    If only someone selling Macs could come up with a sales pitch. It would need to show that swapping out the infected PC for a free Mac would actually be faster and actually cost less than having a staff of 40, trying to fix.

    I wonder if there is going to be a press release of a new government program that would put people to work digging holes, with another crew coming behind them, filling them back up.

    Just an example of a bureaucrat creating a job for life.

  3. Send Obama to Germany – No, that wouldn’t work, he’s only done community organizing so far. He wouldn’t know to work at a real job, like fixing Windows thingies. I f he did he would have full employment. Roll on 2012.

  4. a staff of 40? Talk about priceless. I wish I could TiVo this mess in action. So of the millions of Windoze machines in the hands of the ignorant, it would be a safe bet that every freekin one of them have a booger. OK, Fine. Not all of them. I’ll go with vast majority.

    “…crimes against humanity…..” No sheeeiiit!

  5. So microsht sells craptacular os’s for years, profits billions by raping naive and innocent pc buyers, and IS the cause of malwares and viruses… Yet even after releasing windows7 (my idea),m$ needs help from German government. WTF?! can’t m$ with it’s billion$ do something itself?? They create faulty software for years and constantly fail. M$ should be shut down.

  6. I am amazed at how the world tolerates the likes of Microsoft and the way they put out products that are so shoddy and full of weaknesses and vulnerabilities.

    What is even more amazing is that the customers (individuals and corporates) of these companies willingly part with cash to acquire such defective products.

    And yet more staggering is that society (in the form of the German Government) has bought into the line that it is quite acceptable to have holes in these products. And that society feels that it is incumbent on the consumer to address the holes rather than have the backbone to demand that the provider of the products fix the product in the first place through remedial recall!

    Absolute lunacy!

    The German government ought to just mail ‘dividend cheques’ directly to the shareholders of Microsoft, Symantect et al.

    I put it down to the lack of visibility. No one can see how much real damage is inflicted on the World by the combination of shoddy software, viruses and the lack of regulators.

    If this company made aircraft, every plane that fell out of the sky killing a couple of hundered passengers would create a natural ‘catalytic mechanism’ ensuring a drive to find and fix faults quickly. In that industry, society has even created regulators like the FAA and NTSB to create further urgency to do so. Heck, at times, entire fleets of aircraft get grounded!

    And in the event of a fatal air crash, regulators, insurance companies, lawyers and the in particular, families of the victims, all collectively bring pressure to bear on the manufacturer (in the form of litigation and large payouts) to ensure that ‘tombstone evolution’ occurs. Companies are either tombstoned (e.g., ValueJet) or they learn from the ‘tombstoning’ of their passengers and fix the problems at root.

    Not so in the cushy world of software where no one tracks how many deaths were caused by failures in software let alone the cost of a virus attack!

    Just why is it that software manufacturers are allowed to do this? Why aren’t the consumer groups vocal on this point?

    Now, wouldn’t it be a ‘game-changer’ if the German government were to ‘tax’ Microshaft for the cost of setting up and running this scheme…

  7. U see, we live in world where Apple faces multiple class-action law suites over scratches on iPhones….

    While M$hit causes trillions of $$$ in damages in lost time and productivity, not to mentions enabling hords of criminal gangs to rape the ignorant masses.

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