Feeds

Judge slaps Microsoft with $25m fine top-up

Says 'no' to retrial

3 Big data security analytics techniques

Microsoft has been ordered to pay an additional $25m to a tiny digital rights management company for "litigation misconduct" during a patent case with fellow defendant Autodesk.

A US judge has found Microsoft guilty of acting in bad faith during its case with z4 Technologies, by "burying" vital evidence that could have helped z4, and of attempting to overwork the court and potentially mislead the jury. Microsoft's actions indicated it felt z4 was a "small and irrelevant company that was not worthy of Microsoft's time and attention," the judge said. Microsoft must now pay z4 $140m - Microsoft's second highest patent penalty (Eolas is first on $521m).

A jury in April found Microsoft and Autodesk had violated two of z4's patents, and ordered they jointly pay $133m. Microsoft was found to have infringed on the patents in Microsoft Office and Windows XP and fined $115m in damages plus $2m in fees.

The extra $25m is a double slap in the face to Microsoft, as the company had been asking the court for a new trial arguing z4's patents were unenforceable.

While rejecting the call for a new trial, district judge Leonard Davies outlined four areas where he said Microsoft had engaged in misconduct. Among the four, an attempt to overwhelm the court and the litigant with an "unprecidented" 3,499 exhibits that resulted in a 283 page exhibit list and took up 30 lineal feet of space. However, at trial, defendants admitted just 107 of the exhibits.

"The court concludes that defendants attempted to bury the relevant 107 exhibits admitted at trial in its voluminous 3,449 marked exhibits in the hope that they could conceal their trial evidence in a massive pile of decoys," Davies wrote. "This type of trial tactic is not only unfair to z4, but creates unnecessary work on the court staff and is confusing and potentially misleading to the jury."

Microsoft was also pulled up for withholding an unfavorable email that surfaced only during deposition, for misrepresenting data, and for a "highly questionable" declaration surrounding a "read this first card" that was presented to prove z4 knew of Autodesk's IP policy and that - in light of other instances of litigation misconduct - Davies considered an intentional attempt to mislead z4 and the court.®

SANS - Survey on application security programs

More from The Register

next story
This time it's 'Personal': new Office 365 sub covers just two devices
Redmond also brings Office into Google's back yard
Oh no, Joe: WinPhone users already griping over 8.1 mega-update
Hang on. Which bit of Developer Preview don't you understand?
Microsoft lobs pre-release Windows Phone 8.1 at devs who dare
App makers can load it before anyone else, but if they do they're stuck with it
Half of Twitter's 'active users' are SILENT STALKERS
Nearly 50% have NEVER tweeted a word
Internet-of-stuff startup dumps NoSQL for ... SQL?
NoSQL taste great at first but lacks proper nutrients, says startup cloud whiz
Ditch the sync, paddle in the Streem: Upstart offers syncless sharing
Upload, delete and carry on sharing afterwards?
New Facebook phone app allows you to stalk your mates
Nearby Friends feature goes live in a few weeks
Microsoft TIER SMEAR changes app prices whether devs ask or not
Some go up, some go down, Redmond goes silent
Batten down the hatches, Ubuntu 14.04 LTS due in TWO DAYS
Admins dab straining server brows in advance of Trusty Tahr's long-term support landing
prev story

Whitepapers

SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.