Why Microsoft would want WGA to phone home
...WGA is designed to identify a computer's licensed state and to report that state to Microsoft. Generally speaking, Microsoft wants this information for two reasons. First, they want to fight casual piracy, and this is one way to discourage it. The company believes that tools such as WGA will make it less likely for people to share OS copies or install the same OS throughout, say, their home.
Second, they want you to be wary of pirated software, and this is one way to encourage that. Microsoft believes that commercial forms of piracy are especially egregious because they typically involve a third party selling counterfeited software—software that Microsoft ends up supporting for free. WGA is designed to kill two birds with one stone by tying OS updates to WGA monitoring. The end result is that Joe Consumer has a good reason to make sure his software is legitimate (to get updates), but there's also a new side effect: the company believes that if Joe Consumer learns that he was sold counterfeit software, he'll help nab the crooks, as it were. You can see this aim in Microsoft's policy regarding known cases of OS piracy...Why Microsoft would want WGA to phone home
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