Microsoft Corporation on Tuesday announced that it would be donating $25 million to non-profit organizations supporting local community activities over the next five years. The money comes from settlement recoveries and court rewards resulting from Microsoft efforts to end software piracy.

"Fighting software piracy is not only a question of countering an illegal activity, but also of countering its negative effects on the economy and the communities it pervades," said Brad Smith, general counsel of worldwide sales and support for Microsoft. "As we continue to confront a serious piracy problem, especially on a criminal scale, we think it's appropriate that Microsoft redirect monies recouped from these illegal activities into programs that will spread the benefits of technology more broadly."

Benefits from this cause aren't limited to the United States: Microsoft has already donated money recovered from software piracy to organizations in the Philippines and Malaysia in addition to groups in Dallas and California. Microsoft has a similar program in Europe as well