Microsoft seems to think they do. I’ve heard the rumors flying around the internet, and now it’s been confirmed by a reliable (and Windows friendly) source. Microsoft has been making changes on everybody’s computers… not only without their consent, but against the expressed desire of the computer’s owner to NOT have automatic updates.
Tinfoil hats aside, let’s assume that this was done for a good reason, and with only the best intentions. I’d say it still qualifies as computer intrusion (a.k.a. hacking, a.k.a. cracking, a.k.a. federal felony), when a company changes files on your computer against your wishes. Of course, it’s unlikely anybody will press charges, because court is expensive and M$ has far more money than any of us, or even all of us, and most people just don’t care. But what if the company was malicious? Doesn’t it scare you that they can do whatever they want, whenever they want, to any Windows computer in the world? To every Windows computer that’s online? Doesn’t it scare anybody that all it would take would be one disgruntled Microsoft employee to totally FUBAR millions of PCs at once? Now does it sound like something worth getting worked up over?
Hell, I don’t have Windows on my home PC, and it scares me. Something like this could be catastrophic to the economy.
Tinfoil hat back on: I understand China has an interest in a Chinese Linux distro, and they supposedly have an army of hackers…. who allegedly recently breached the Pentagon and the British government, and attempted a break-in on German government systems. Who’s to say they didn’t/can’t/won’t tamper with Microsoft automatic-even-if-you-say-NO updates?