VirnetX Sues Microsoft a Second Time
Now that a Texas jury has found that Windows Vista, Windows XP and Office Communicator infringed its patents, VirnetX Holding has set out to prove that a few other Microsoft products do as well.
Two days after winning a $105.75 million jury verdict against the software giant, VirnetX has filed a new complaint claiming Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 infringe those patents as well. Those products hadn’t yet been released when VirnetX first went after Microsoft, so the company is now circling back, hoping to collect damages for their alleged infringement.
“This is a tactical and procedural post-trial action to ensure and protect our property rights as we proceed to final resolution with Microsoft,” Kendall Larsen, VirnetX president and CEO, wrote in a March 18 statement.
Microsoft (MSFT) has vowed to appeal the first verdict, which it described as “legally and factually unsupported,” and took a similarly dim view of the latest VirnetX assault. “Microsoft respects intellectual property, and we believe our products do not infringe the patents involved,” Microsoft flack Kevin Kutz told the Seattle Post Intelligencer. “Moreover, we believe those patents are invalid. We will challenge VirnetX’s claims.”
To that end, the company has petitioned the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to re-examine the VirnetX patents, evidently with some success. In a preliminary review, the USPTO has found all but one of the VirnetX claims invalid. This doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll be rejected, but for Microsoft, it’s a step in the right direction.