Feeds

Juniper, Palo Alto to square off over firewall tech

Trial to proceed late February

The essential guide to IT transformation

A long-running legal battle between Juniper Networks and Palo Alto Networks is due to proceed to trial on 24 February, after a Delaware court declined a motion from Juniper for a summary judgement.

The sue-ball battle has been going on since 2011, when lawyer's letters first began passing between the two companies.

At the centre of the case is Juniper's US patent US 7,779,459, “Method and apparatus for implementing a layer 3/layer 7 firewall in an l2 device”: one of its accredited inventors, Yu Ming Mao, was working for NetScreen (later acquired by Juniper) when the patent was filed.

Mao and others from NetScreen later departed Juniper to set up Palo Alto, and its speciality in firewalls is what's put needles under Juniper's fingernails. The larger company alleges that Mao and former NetScreen CTO Nir Zuk infringe the '459 patent, as well as other patents, in their firewalls.

Also listed in Juniper's original 8,077,723 covering packet processing, 7,650,634 (an intelligent integrated network security device), 7,302,700 (firewall implementation), 7,093,280 (Internet security system), and 6,772,347 (another firewall implementation patent).

Palo Alto has, in turn, counter-filed with the allegation that Juniper Networks infringe US patent 5,877,139, which it bought from 3Com, covering a network management GUI, along with 7,779,096 and 7,797,439, two media server patents it bought from HP.

In the latest hearing, Juniper Networks had asked the Delaware court to make a summary judgement that Palo Alto had infringed its patents, while Palo Alto asked for dismissal of the case on grounds that there was insufficient evidence of infringement. Palo Alto had a small win, with some of the patents ruled out of the case by the judgement.

However, Juniper Networks will still be able to present arguments covering all seven patents. Juniper's request for “assignor estoppel” was also granted; this prevents Palo Alto from pursuing a claim that the patents are invalid. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Britain's housing crisis: What are we going to do about it?
Rent control: Better than bombs at destroying housing
Top beak: UK privacy law may be reconsidered because of social media
Rise of Twitter etc creates 'enormous challenges'
GCHQ protesters stick it to British spooks ... by drinking urine
Activists told NOT to snap pics of staff at the concrete doughnut
What do you mean, I have to POST a PHYSICAL CHEQUE to get my gun licence?
Stop bitching about firearms fees - we need computerisation
Ex US cybersecurity czar guilty in child sex abuse website case
Health and Human Services IT security chief headed online to share vile images
We need less U.S. in our WWW – Euro digital chief Steelie Neelie
EC moves to shift status quo at Internet Governance Forum
Oz biz regulator discovers shared servers in EPIC FACEPALM
'Not aware' that one IP can hold more than one Website
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.