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RSA and Verisign beat SSL patent infringement rap

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An American jury has rejected claims by a retired Florida engineer that RSA Security and VeriSign infringed his encryption patent.

In a February 2001 patent infringement lawsuit, Leon Stambler contended that products marketed by RSA Security that use SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) version 3.0, infringed three of his patents.

SSL is, of course, an important protocol for security confidential transactions over the Net and is built into all major browsers and Web servers. Stambler sought $20 million in damages.

On March 7, a jury in Delaware reached a unanimous verdict in favour of RSA Security and its co-defendant, VeriSign, on all infringement claims. RSA today issued a statement welcoming the verdict.

Separate proceedings, which began yesterday, will decide the overall validity of Stambler's patents. An article by London law firm Masons gives more detailed background on the case, which has important implications for the encryption market as a whole. ®

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