What are the Different Kinds of Computer Disclaimers?

G. Wiesen

There are many different types of computer disclaimers, which typically depend on the type of material being protected and the different possible damages that could be caused by such material. One of the most common types of disclaimer is for computer hardware that can be used with other pieces of hardware, and such disclaimers will typically warn about potential damage to users or other equipment. There are also frequently computer disclaimers used with software to warn computer users about errors that can occur and ways in which computer software can potentially interfere with each other.

Computer hardware disclaimers will inform consumers about situations in which using equipment in a certain way will void the warranty.
Computer hardware disclaimers will inform consumers about situations in which using equipment in a certain way will void the warranty.

Computer disclaimers are typically legal statements made by software designers and hardware developers to indicate any potential risks that may be associated with using the program or device in question. These are usually similar to other types of disclaimers and exist to help protect a company from civil suits and claims that could arise from use of a product. The amount of protection actually afforded by computer disclaimers can vary, however, and just because a hardware manufacturer warns about potential damage does not mean it will not be responsible for such damage.

Hardware computer disclaimers are quite frequently used to indicate to a consumer or technical professional what hardware uses should be avoided. These will often indicate that certain conditions or behaviors will void any warranty, and that using hardware incorrectly can result in damage to the hardware. For electronic devices, like computer equipment, this often includes exposure to water, opening of closed compartments on disc drives, and touching certain areas without wearing proper equipment or gloves. Since computer equipment can also use electricity and lasers, some computer disclaimers for hardware also include warnings about injury that may occur if eyes or skin are exposed to parts of the computer.

Software computer disclaimers typically indicate ways in which software is intended for use, or ways in which they protect a software developer from civil claims made against it in case the software should become corrupted. These disclaimers are often part of the end user license agreement (EULA) that comes with a software program, and should be read prior to software installation and use. Computer disclaimers for software will often indicate how software should be used properly, and warn against the possibilities of data loss due to software malfunction. These disclaimers will also typically warn against copyright infringement, often stating penalties for such actions, and indicate licensing terms for the customer.

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