Microsoft License Verification Process! Weeeeee!
I'm not sure what happened, but about two years ago was my first experience with this. We complied, and Microsoft came back and said we were out of compliance based on random changes they had made to their licensing since our last true-up with our re-seller, and we had to fork over about $30,000 that we didn't budget for to become compliant again.
To be fair, our previous re-sellers did give us some bad information about licenses, so after that audit we switched re-sellers.
Well, I just got picked again this year. In the 13 years I've worked in Information Technology, these last two years were the first time I'd ever seen this... And now I think I know why. It's basically a shady marketing tool!
I reached out to our new re-seller about this so called audit, and here is what they said:
We’ve run into this a lot recently and over the years. Their wording seems to hide the fact that you don’t have to do this.
The emails starting with “v-“ are not Microsoft and they are not audits. They are voluntary, but the results are shared with Microsoft at which point you would be required to reconcile anything they find.
If you want to do an engagement like this to assess your licensing, we can do it for you. We don’t share the results with Microsoft and just deliver them to you.In their frequently asked questions, the people contacting me about this Microsoft Verification Process say this:
I asked my rep about that too and they said:
Man I don’t like that wording. “us”
That v- in the email means that person doesn’t work for Microsoft, but is contracted. Microsoft allows this to happen, but it’s not really their employees. I see these all the time and we just ignore them unless you would like to do an engagement.
Microsoft does audit occasionally, but this email is pretty threatening. Microsoft audits don’t come in email form, I’m 99% sure.So long story short, if you are contacted about participating in a Microsoft License Verification and the people contacting you have a "v-" before their email address, you should ignore them and reach out to your re-seller instead. It's really just a ploy so Microsoft can increase their bottom line before your annual true-up!
Have you experienced one of these? Did you comply? Is my rep wrong? Let us know your story in the comments!