Microsoft hit by another patent dispute

Microsoft has been ordered to pay VirnetX $106 million over a VPN patent.

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Microsoft has been slapped with a $106 million fine for infringing two patents held by VirnetX Holding Corporation.

A US federal jury in Texas ordered Microsoft to pay VirnetX $71.75 million for infringing a virtual private network patent, and a further $34 million for violating a patent covering the creation of a secure domain name service.

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According to McKool Smith, the law firm which represented VirnetX, those fines could be tripled by a judge, as the jury found that Microsoft "wilfully" violated the patents.

"Our clients are very happy with today's verdict," said McKool Smith lawyer Douglas Cawley. "We hope this decision sends a clear message to patent infringers everywhere that they will be held responsible for wrongly profiting off the hard work of others."

Microsoft claimed it was readying an appeal. "We are disappointed by the jury's verdict," said Kevin Kutz, director of public affairs at Microsoft.

"We respect others' intellectual property, and we believe the evidence demonstrated that we do not infringe and the patents are invalid. We believe the award of damages is legally and factually unsupported, so we will ask the court to overturn the verdict," he added.

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