Oracle’s scare tactics to lock you into overpriced support

Three Oracle scare tactics to keep you locked into overpriced support

If you’re reading this article, then you’re probably considering leaving Oracle Support, either supporting your Oracle systems yourself or working with a third-party like us to save money.

But what happens when Oracle finds out you’re planning on leaving them?

In our experience, one of two things:

  1. Nothing happens at all, phew!
  2. You get a scary email from your account manager

But why is the email scary? Oracle cannot stop you leaving their support service, but they can try and intimidate you into staying.

We’ve seen plenty of Oracle’s attempts to scare their customers into staying on their support, but three of the most common reasons they give in their communications are:

1 – You lose access to Oracle patches

If you terminate Oracle Support and instead proceed with self-maintenance or third-party support, you are deciding not to receive new Oracle security patches and updates for your Oracle application software. Doing so means you are choosing not to patch security vulnerabilities, and you are thereby accepting the risks and liabilities that go along with this decision.

While it is correct that by leaving Oracle Support you lose access to Oracle’s own patches, it is incorrect to say that you are ‘choosing not to patch security vulnerabilities‘.

By leaving Oracle Support, you are instead choosing to use non-Oracle patches to fix issues and address security vulnerabilities. These patches can be created by your in-house team or by a third-party provider like us.

What’s more, Oracle’s traditional security patching method is out of date, requiring you to test and manually apply patches to your systems in a costly process that usually takes months. This is all time where your systems are left vulnerable.

But by leaving Oracle Support, you can instead choose more modern patching methods like those used by Support Revolution.

We use Gartner recommended TrendMicro’s Deep Security system (learn more about this here) – this allows us to place a fence around our customer’s systems and apply patches to this fence. This means we can protect our customers in hours, not months, while our customers decide whether to also carry out the traditional patching method.

The truth: Support Revolution will create its own patches and fixes for your systems at half the price of Oracle Support.

2 – No access to Oracle’s source code

Self-maintenance and third-party support models do not have, and cannot lawfully access, the Oracle source code necessary to develop security patches for Oracle products.

This is incorrect. Third-party support partners can lawfully access ~99.5% of Oracle’s ERP source code as long as you have a developer licence (which you almost certainly do as Oracle forced the majority of its customers to buy them). This means that we can fix the majority of issues we come across.

Not only that, but when you leave Oracle Support, you can legally download all the patches and upgrades that have been released while you were on their support contract. We do this patch archive for you when you transition to our services and can legally use this code when needed. Any patches that are released after you transition to us, we create ourselves for you.

But what about the 0.5% of code that we cannot access? How do we patch that if required?

This is the other reason why Support Revolution uses TrendMicro’s Deep Security System – not only does it provide us with a superior method of patching, it also enables us to apply patches without altering source code!

The truth: Support Revolution can legally access the majority of Oracle’s source code, can create its own patches, and can protect your entire system using TrendMicro.

3 – Only Oracle can patch Oracle problems

Software needs to be updated, and the best way to correct an identified vulnerability within the source code is with a patch provided by the software vendor. The fact remains, only Oracle can do this for Oracle software.

As we’ve already explained, this is incorrect as third-party providers can create and apply their own patches and fixes to your systems (we’ve been legally doing so for more than eight years).

Oracle are also rarely the first to identify, communicate and fix issues with their software. The majority of bugs and threats are identified by third-parties who announce their own fixes – which Oracle then incorporates into their quarterly patch update.

We monitor the same security channels as Oracle’s team and respond to every relevant threat, creating and applying our own fixes to our customers. While those stuck with Oracle Support have to wait for Oracle’s quarterly announcement, and then still have to go through the process of applying the patch manually themselves.

The truth: Support Revolution can patch Oracle problems for you faster and cheaper than Oracle will.

Misinformation is just one of Oracle’s dirty tricks

Oracle’s aim is to keep you tied into their overpriced support model; this means more money for them each year, but also means they can pressure you into expensive upgrades as they de-support their older versions.

This is why we started Support Revolution, not only can we cut your support bill in half (at least), but we also provide support indefinitely for older versions of Oracle and SAP’s software, regardless of any customisations. Something Oracle will not do.

We’ve recently written a white paper outlining even more of Oracle and SAP’s dirty tricks when it comes to their support contracts. It outlines each dirty trick and what you can do to protect yourself.