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Kaspersky withdraws its European antitrust lawsuit against Microsoft

by Felix Omondi
kaspersky lab

Antivirus vendor, Kaspersky, has decided to drop its European antitrust lawsuit against software giant Microsoft. This development comes after Microsoft agreed to make changes in its upcoming Windows 10 Fall Creators Update that will appease third party antivirus vendors like Kaspersky, who have been complaining of being shortchanged in the recent Windows 10 versions.

Kaspersky first filed a complaint against Microsoft in June, leveling accusations against the software giant that it disables its antivirus software in Windows upgrades. Kaspersky further accused Microsoft of abusing its market dominance to “fiercely promote” its own antivirus, Windows Defender.

In late June, Microsoft came forth and admitted that indeed Windows 10 does prompt users to install a new version of antivirus from third parties like Kaspersky. However, it first disabled older version if they were not compatible with the new upgraded Windows.

Now, Microsoft says it “will work more closely with AV vendors to help them with compatibility reviews in advance of each feature update becoming available to customers.

Microsoft says, going forward, it will provide more visibility of the next scheduled Windows 10 updates to give AV vendors enough time to make necessary changes. One of Microsoft’s key changes in the upcoming Windows 10 Fall Creators Update is how alerts and notifications are handled by AV software.

Microsoft will allow AV app “use their own alerts and notifications to renew antivirus products before and after they have expired.” In plain terms, Microsoft is changing the way Windows 10 will inform users when their antivirus software has expired.

Instead of providing an initial toast notification that users could ignore, the new notification will persist on the screen until the user either elects to renew the existing solution or chooses to rely on Windows Defender or another solution provider, said Rob Lefferts, Director of Program Management for Windows Enterprise and Security at Microsoft.

It would seem these changes proposed by Microsoft in the upcoming Windows upgrade have appeased Kaspersky, enough to withdraw its complaints. The spokesperson from the AV Company said:

The company is satisfied with the proposed approach by Microsoft to address the warnings issued by the Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS), and its implementation roadmap. Kaspersky Lab is also taking all steps necessary to withdraw its filings to the European Commission and to Germany’s Federal Cartel Office, stating that it has no more claims for Microsoft to address.”

Kaspersky’s withdrawal of its lawsuit seems like the reasonable thing to do, as the case looked like it would only end by the European Commission ruling. This move has also led to a continued partnership between Microsoft and Kaspersky.

We appreciate the feedback and continued dialogue with our partners and are pleased to have found common ground with Kaspersky Lab on the complaints raised in Russia and Europe. We look forward to our continued partnership with the industry,” says Lefferts.

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