Microsoft Corp. is expanding its indemnification program for Windows and other software products in order to shield users from legal claims and patent disputes, the world’s largest software maker said on Tuesday.
Previously available to Microsoft’s biggest corporate customers, the intellectual property protection plan will now be available to all end users of its Windows, Windows Server and Office products, the company said in a statement.
Software indemnification has become a major issue with the growth of Linux, a freely available operating system that is developed jointly by a far-flung network of software developers. The SCO Group Inc. has targeted Linux users in lawsuits, claiming that the software contains technology that it owns.
Microsoft said it would ensure proper development of its own software, acquire licenses for third-party technology it adopts, cross-license technology and protect its own intellectual property.