According to a post on Russian forum RSDN, Denuvo – creators of one of the currently most prolific anti-piracy software in video gaming – have been illegally using someone else’s software in their work.
The accusation comes from user drVano, and (thanks to a TorrentFreak) we know that the accusation revolves around the illegal use of tools created by VMProtect Software – specifically, protection against cracking and reverse-engineering.
According to drVano’s account, VMProtect Software were approached by Denuvo three years earlier, with the intent of using VMProtect’s tools in their DRM software. After deliberation, VMProtect claim they told Denuvo that the standard $500 license would not be sufficient to cover Denuvo’s needs, implying that a larger price would be sought for use. drVano then goes on to claim that Denuvo ignored this message, purchased a $500 license, and released their software.
“Everything went well for Denuvo until we notified them that their VMProtect license had been canceled due to a breach of its licensing conditions. Options were offered for solving the problem, including paying modest compensation to us. Our proposal was ignored”. — drVano — via TorrentFreak.
While legal action is being threatened in partnership with “long-standing partners from Intellect-C“, what is perhaps the most interesting are the other methods VMProtect have taken. Apparently, VMProtect reached out to anti-virus software creator Sophos, and the two came to an agreement that the offending versions of Denuvo would be flagged as potential. In addition, drVano alleges that his company has also reached out to Valve to remove the work of “scammers” from their Steam Store.
In essence, this is a noted anti-piracy software creator being accused of piracy. The irony is palpable. It’s interesting to note that Sophos have (allegedly) agreed to support VMProtect Software in their struggle against Denuvo. Quite how Valve will react to the same request will also be interesting to see. It’s also worth noting that Denuvo did purchase a licence for their use – and at this stage, we only have drVano’s word for these accusations.
TechRaptor has reached out to Sophos, Valve, and Denuvo for comment.
Cracking Denuvo has become something of a metagame amongst certain circles of gamers – to the point where there is a website dedicated to tracking the cracks. The arguments of the usefulness of DRM like Denuvo are many and varied, but it’ll be interesting to see whether these accusations have any impact on the use of Denuvo in the future.
Is this the beginning of the end for the DRM company? Or, since they purchased a license, are they in the right here? Do you even think these accusations are legitimate, or just a company trying to get more money from a customer? Let us know in the comments below.