Microsoft Corp. (MSFT), which has been girding for a fight with anti-virus software company Kaspersky Lab, got a bit of a reprieve when Chief Executive Eugene Kaspersky said he would hold off for now in filing a complaint with the European Commission.

In November, Kaspersky Lab, which is based in Russia, threatened to file a complaint with the European Commission arguing Microsoft is using its dominance in operating system software to push its anti-virus software on Windows 10 over those of competitors. The executive told Reuters he has been engaged in ongoing talks with Microsoft that are resulting in some progress. "They are listening to us and they made a few changes. It's an ongoing process," he told Reuters on the sidelines of the Hannover Messe industrial trade fair in Germany. "Of course if Microsoft agrees to all our requests we will not file it." Kaspersky would not disclose what changes Microsoft has made. (See also: Microsoft Word Target of Zero-Day Malware Attack.)

'Killing' Independent Developers

In addition to allegedly favoring its own Defender anti-virus software over rivals, Microsoft is also accused of creating roadblocks for independent security software companies to get into the anti-virus software market. In a blog post late last year, the executive said: "Microsoft's actions aren't only making things worse for users and killing off the whole ecosystem of independent developers.” Kaspersky has already filed a complaint in Russia, which has prompted the country’s anti-monopoly commission to look into the allegations. Kaspersky told Reuters that case is moving forward, but he didn’t know what the outcome will be. (See also: Microsoft Confirms Update Is Coming To Windows 10.)


Microsoft isn’t only facing potential legal action from the likes of Kaspersky. Users in the U.S. are upset with how Microsoft rolled out upgrades of Windows 10 and have filed a class action lawsuit as a result. The suit is being led by three residents of Illinois who claim a Windows 10 update destroyed their data and damaged their computers. The claim centers on Microsoft’s offer in which Windows 7 OS users could upgrade to Windows 10 for free.

The Windows 10 upgrade program, which went on for a year, has resulted in a slew of complaints from competitors and another lawsuit in which a woman with a small business in California was awarded $10,000 by a judge this past summer. The class action contends Microsoft cost users their time and money because they had to deal with Microsoft tech support, replace hardware and fix software that no longer worked after upgrading to Windows 10. The class action has more than 100 plaintiffs and is seeking $5 million or more in damages.


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