M$’s Partner Involved In Corruption In Quebec

The “attack-dog” salesmanship widely seen at M$ became“After several months of investigating, UPAC officers arrested Abdelaziz Younsi, an information technology director at the province’s public security ministry.
They also arrested businessman Mohamed El Khayat, who is the president and co-founder of IT company Informatique EBR
public in one of M$’s “partners” in Canada. A provincial government department was involved in a kickback scheme involving procurement of computers. No doubt they came bundled with M$’s favourite OS and an ubiquitous office suite… The contract was for $3.3million CAD and the kickback was $400K CAD. I wonder what M$’s share was. They must have had a ton of software on those computers to justify such a large kickback. Do you think the item would be covered by “promotion” or “cost of sales”?

No doubt the government of the province of Quebec is a little sensitive to such matters as they were sued for “buying M$” a few years ago. It’s all good news when bad guys get caught.

See UPAC makes 2 arrests, including IT manager at Public Security Ministry.

About Robert Pogson

I am a retired teacher in Canada. I taught in the subject areas where I have worked for almost forty years: maths, physics, chemistry and computers. I love hunting, fishing, picking berries and mushrooms, too.
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14 Responses to M$’s Partner Involved In Corruption In Quebec

  1. DrLoser says:

    No, they can’t. Those governments are not sufficiently open or we would know how much GNU/Linux they use.

    Really? Canadian Provincial Governments do not share information between themselves?

    You could well be right, Robert.

    In which case I suggest you stop worrying about $50 license fees and start worrying about this catastrophic collapse in democracy and accountability that your country apparently lacks.

    Even though it doesn’t.

    I mean, we have to maintain certain standards, don’t we? And it beggars belief that Joe Bloggs in IT Accounts in Manitoba (random choice) would not share information with Pierre le Fou in IT Accounts in Quebec.

    Well, it beggars belief if you’re remotely rational.

    Hellooooo …. oiaohm!

  2. ram wrote, “most of their business from governments”.

    As a teacher I dealt with some of those and the price/performance was ugly. Earlier when I was a student, I know some suppliers gave kickbacks to the univerity’s procurement department but only a part of that was put back into the science budget. Several times we had the Purchasing guys make some really strange purchases because they didn’t understand the technology. What we may have saved on the kickbacks was lost in having to return and reorder stuff. The proper way to do business is to supply a price-list or a quotation, including volume discounts if any and compete fairly in the market. Any private deal is likely to distort the market. The biggest deal with which I was personally involved was about $100K and I wrote up requests for quotations from what was published and things worked pretty smoothly except my employer didn’t want to approve purchases in a timely manner even though we had deadlines. Thank Goodness, most of what schools need can come from donations except perhaps networking, and with FLOSS flies. If something has a price-tag of $0 it’s a lot easier to fit into the budget.

  3. ram says:

    Let’s face it, some companies, particularly those that get most of their business from governments use bribery and kickbacks as their primary, or even sole, “marketing” tools.

  4. DrLoser wrote, “Quebec can compare with Ontario. And Ontario can compare with Alberta. And Alberta can compare with Manitoba. And so on.”

    No, they can’t. Those governments are not sufficiently open or we would know how much GNU/Linux they use… Also, M$ demands signing an NDA to negotiate “better terms” and the suckers never find out that M$’s margins are huge even on the “better terms”. You can’t properly negotiate with a monopoly to which you’ve agreed to be locked in. It’s all divide-and-conquer. M$ gets one “partner” to compete against another to M$’s benefit and they get one “customer” to compete against another to M$’s benefit. Kicking back money to an insider/Judas to allow the sale to go through with more money for M$ is par for the course.

  5. DrLoser says:

    HA! You should read the EULA when you have a few days to study it.

    I can’t help you with reading legalese, Robert. It’s not even necessary to do so: not for you, not for me.

    To a large extent, the terms Microsoft offer to any governmental organisation are completely transparent. Why? Because, as I pointed out, Quebec can compare with Ontario. And Ontario can compare with Alberta. And Alberta can compare with Manitoba. And so on.

    You’re still missing the point. If you’re a penny ante snake-oil fraud like Dougman, you don’t piddle around at the edges of a M$ EULA.

    You go for the hardware (eg Cisco, maybe Lenovo). I’m not even going to pick one, because I’m not even suggesting that a hardware manufacturer is at fault. But it’s easier to rip off a hardware contract than it is to rip off a software package contract … if you’re a middle-man, which these people are.

    It’s even easier to rip off a government if you’re a “consultancy,” like IBM.

    Do you know how much the National Health Service IT fiasco cost the UK? Twelve Billion Pounds.

    Chase around after a couple of hundred thousand savings on OS licensing all you want, although I’d prefer you had evidence of specific malfeasance rather than just frothing at the mouth and back-quoting interim DoJ judgements from fifteen years ago.

    Me, I’d rather spunk a couple of hundred thousand on something that is barely usable than be screwed for twelve billion.

    Then again, I have a sense of perspective. (And I don’t even believe the couple of hundred thousand, although I will accept evidence to that effect.)

  6. DrLoser, wrote of a convicted monopolist, “transparent licensing costs”.

    HA! You should read the EULA when you have a few days to study it. Then think of the NDAs M$ is fond of having people sign before making a negotiation… M$ publishes a high price that few pay and then has ample room to negotiate the level of ripoff to be applied. They have a monopoly, remember? Nothing prevents M$ charging for extra CALs, licences, and even distributing software the customer will not use. They do that all the time. With an insider on the payroll anything is possible. He’s the guy who checks off deliverables, eh? The possibilities are endless. The guys did get caught. They must have really ramped costs up to be noticed by the bean-counters. Maybe the bean-counters actually left the office to count stuff.

  7. DrLoser says:

    As you know M$ is the only one with product bundled with most PCs used by business/government. They stand to benefit if government pays too high a price.

    And they stand to lose if the middle-man (in this case EBR) rips them off through fraud.

    I don’t know whether you noticed this, Robert, but the cite is wholly concerned with fraud. It doesn’t even mention M$ once.

    On the other hand, EBR has various partners who might also have had an interest in making “government pay too high a price.”

    Hardware manufacturers, like Lenovo, Xerox, Sisco, Toshiba, LG … You can complete the list yourself.

    Service companies like VMware and Sophos.

    Consultancy companies like, ahem, IBM.and presumably LaCie (haven’t bothered to look them up: just an assumption because it’s Francophone Canada).

    Now, neither one of us is an expert on corporate fraud as applied to government, Robert. We are both as pure as the driven snow here.

    But, were I an imaginary rip-off merchant (I’ll give myself the name “Dougie” for the purposes of this argument), which one would I pick?

    a) A commodity OS company with transparent licensing costs — complain all you like about M$ licensing, but Quebec can always do a comparison against, say, Ontario. Moreover, costs at <$200 per unit.
    b) A hardware company, particularly a networking hardware company like Cisco. "We can sell you the client units at 10% under, but you really need the Whizzo-2014 Server at $1 million to make those bunnies run!"
    c) A consultancy company like IBM and the others?

    I'm thinking (c), possibly (b).

    When we both turn to crime to fund our old age, Robert, I am going to be living it up in Las Vegas, and you're going to be somewhere in the gutter. You just don't have the crim-skills, do you?

  8. DrLoser wrote, “Explain to me again why you picked Microsoft out of this bunch”.

    As you know M$ is the only one with product bundled with most PCs used by business/government. They stand to benefit if government pays too high a price.

  9. oiaohm says:

    kurkosdr in case of Redhat Partner doing the wrong thing they do sue.

    DrLoser you could say that the list ESR supports is a list of companies who don’t care how their brand is used. Personally all of them should have to explain why they are not taking action against them if they have not already.

    DrLoser IBM will cancel the partnership. Microsoft has been known to let people keep Gold partnerships. after doing bad things. Yes I do agree the single name is wrong but there are others on that list that need a spot light focused on them for allowing brand name to keep on being used.

  10. DrLoser says:

    And there’s only a single “Premier partner:” IBM.

    Who have never once been accused of overselling anything, no, not never.

    But of course we all love IBM because they do unspeakable things to FOSS that we don’t quite understand but it’ll probably all turn out for the better eventually.

  11. DrLoser says:

    EBR Partners:

    Premier Business Partner: IBM.

    Other partners:
    Microsoft. (Hooray, my favourite monopolists come in at #7! I may even get paid this month!)
    logiciels Lotus.
    Aruba networks.
    APC (Schneider Electric).
    Middle Atlantic Products.
    VBrick (No, not a virtualised method to brick your Android with a distro of choice).
    Igel Technology.

    Explain to me again why you picked Microsoft out of this bunch, Robert.

    Go on. I am a patient man. I adore facts, and I am willing to wait for them to appear.

  12. kurkosdr wrote, “There is no evidence MS had any knowledge of this”.

    Yes there is. Read the trial exhibits in US DOJ v M$. There is NOTHING that M$ leaves to chance in selling its products. They do plant spies in major “customers”. They do everything they can to eliminate competition. In this case, you could argue that M$ doesn’t care which of its “partners” sells to the government of Quebec but you would be forgetting that M$ never fails to encourage some “partners” that they are more “special” than others. They could do that to get exclusive access or to maximize sales. M$ has opportunity, motive and a history.

  13. kurkosdr says:

    “it is a liability to even sell or purchase their software stack, you to could be sued!”

    …and get attacked by self-righteous dogbrain dudes.

    There is no evidence MS had any knowledge of this. If some RedHat partner was involved in a similar scheme elsewhere, linuxeros would be like “oh, look at that bad partner tarnishing RedHat’s name”.

  14. dougman says:

    Not ONLY is it a liability to use Win-Doh’s, it is a liability to even sell or purchase their software stack, you to could be sued!

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