Microsoft has fired the latest salvo in its battle to take away search engine users from Google.

The company has unveiled a new incentive scheme, SearchPerks, which follows on from the Live Search Cashback program rolled out earlier this year.

SearchPerks requires users to download and install a search tracking program in return for receiving credits known as tickets that can be exchanged for prizes.

The number of tickets earned depends on how many searches the user makes on the Live Search engine.

Microsoft said it will limit the number of tickets that can be earned by those suspected to be using bots or conducting other fraudulent searches.

Schemes such as SearchPerks are still important in helping Microsoft to make users more aware of its search engine, Microsoft PR director Whitney Burk told CNET News.com.

She commented: "We know we have some challenges with the brand and perception. Simple awareness is still a challenge for us."

About three-quarters of searches made in the UK during August took place on Google, Hitwise data shows.

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