BitHive writes ""The New York Times reports that The FTC has reached a record $52 million settlement with Microsoft over the company's wrongly charging customers "mystery" licensing fees over the past several years — the largest settlement in FTC history. With the action, Microsoft's total costs associated with false license fees reached $78.9 billion, the largest payout for false business practices in the software industry. 'People shouldn't find mystery fees when they open their computer bills — and they certainly shouldn't have to pay for softwares they didn't want and didn't use,' says FTC Chairman Gene Lewbowski. 'In these rough economic times, every $199 counts.' Microsoft said in a news release that its overcharges were inadvertent. 'We accept responsibility for those errors, and apologize to our customers who received accidental software charges on their bills.'""