India pushes for Windows 10 discount following recent ransomware attacks

In light of the recent WannaCry and Petya ransomware attacks, India is pushing Microsoft to provide a one-time discount on Windows 10 so that its more than 50 million Windows users can upgrade to a more secure version. Reuters reports that India's cyber security coordinator, Gulshan Rai, has indicated that Microsoft is open to the prospect.

According to the report, Rai first reached out to Microsoft with the idea following the WannaCry attack in May. India is requesting a one-time price cut that would allow users and businesses in the country to upgrade at what Rai describes as "throw-away prices." Currently, Windows 10 is offered in India at starting at 7,999 rupees ($124), with more expensive versions running up to 14,999 rupees ($232).

It's not clear what a discounted price might look like, but Rai expects to hear more "in a couple of days." For its part, Microsoft has not stated whether it intends to offer a discount. It's also not clear whether any other countries have reached out with similar proposals, but India could provide a model for other similar discounts.

Reuters adds that only a small portion of India's Windows PCs are currently running Windows 10. Compounding that problem is the "wide use of pirated Windows OS versions," which wouldn't have the latest security updates. That's a particularly big problem given the fact that WannaCry, and more recently Petya, seemed to most harshly impacted Windows 7 installations. A cheap upgrade path could help to mitigate the impact of another large-scale attack.

Dan Thorp-Lancaster

Dan Thorp-Lancaster is the former Editor-in-Chief of Windows Central. He began working with Windows Central, Android Central, and iMore as a news writer in 2014 and is obsessed with tech of all sorts. You can follow Dan on Twitter @DthorpL and Instagram @heyitsdtl