Avast me’hearties, Pirate Anti-Virus licence's up for ‘a sharin’

Mike Halsey MVP
Dec 6, 2010
Updated • Dec 2, 2012

Normally any software company that finds one of its product keys being shared on torrent websites would crack down pretty quickly by withdrawing it.  Not Avast however who, according to a report by PC Pro magazine decided to track installs with it to see how far it would spread.

The company stayed deathly silent for eighteen months but have now finally announced that there have been 774,651 activations using the pirated key for their Avast Pro suite.

The key was originally issued to a small business in Arizona but has since been used right around the world including, according to an Avast spokesperson, "on two computers in Vatican City".

The spokesperson went on to say “There is a paradox in computer users looking for ‘free’ antivirus programs at locations with a known reputation for spreading malware.”

Now the dodgy code is being used in over 200 countries and Avast have issued a pop-up warning on the relevant computers informing the user, who may be completely unsuspecting, of the situation and offering them the option to switch to a legitimate copy of either their free or paid-for anti-virus suites.

There's no data yet on how many pirates have decided to go legit, but according to Avast "it's going according to plan".


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  1. mubash said on January 21, 2011 at 6:20 pm

    pls i need avast 5.0 license key thanks……………..

  2. rajkumar said on December 8, 2010 at 4:46 pm

    hi!!!!!!!!!!!11111 guys this net is awesome yar…….. we can getsome new softwares here u can visit here the softwares are free to download no prblm

  3. Genisis said on December 7, 2010 at 5:11 pm

    Antivirus? What is that? LINUX….FTW!!!!!

  4. Thomas said on December 7, 2010 at 9:59 am

    Mine says: “Avast me’hearties”, when it updates, as I use the free version with the pirate-language (talk like a pirate) from Avast installed. Pretty cool.

  5. Rick said on December 6, 2010 at 8:41 pm

    Avast – pfffff……company is a joke. I reported several warez posts to Avast that were made on one of my free ware sites. They didn’t care – the posts didn’t even come with a crack – just the serial. And apparently it worked forever!!

    I think they just can’t be bothered protecting their asset – now that is kind of scary when they want you to trust them to take care of your assets :)

  6. Shatimi said on December 6, 2010 at 7:26 pm

    Now what kind of a would use a PIRATED key for an ANTIVIRUS? Talk about security and protection *facepalm*

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