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Symantec pursues $55m copyright damages

Claims copied software might break your computer

Website security in corporate America

Symantec is seeking $55m in damages against eight US and Canadian firms for selling illegal copies of its software.

It has filed civil lawsuits for trademark and copyright infringement, fraud, unfair competition, counterfeit documentation, trafficking, and false advertising.

Scott Minden, director of legal affairs at Symantec, claimed counterfeit software might "damage users' machines" or steal their identities.

"These software pirates were moving large quantities of counterfeit product and, as a result, numerous unsuspecting users are now at risk for having their information stolen or lost," he said.

The security firm is seeking damages of between $4m and $10m from Californian firms Acortech, mPlus, and Rowcal Distribution; Logical Plus, from New York; SoftwareOutlets.com, and Global Impact, Inc, from Florida; Directron.com, from Texas; and eDirect Software from Canada.

Symantec's "Brand Protection Task Force" bought from the targets suspected counterfeit versions of its Norton SystemWorks, Norton AntiVirus, Norton Internet Security, pcAnywhere, and Symantec AntiVirus Small Business Edition. ®

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