Security Bytes

Oct 1 2007   11:39AM GMT

Cenzic and HP settle Web app security patent dispute

David Schneier David Schneier Profile: David Schneier

HP has reached an agreement with application security provider Cenzic to cross-license some patents that were at the center of a pair of lawsuits that SPI Dynamics (now part of HP) filed against Cenzic. SPI Dynamics filed suits in federal court in both Georgia and Virginia claiming that Cenzic’s products infringed on patents that SPI Dynamics holds that are related to specific methods for detecting vulnerabilities in Web applications.

“The Hewlett-Packard Company and Cenzic, Inc. have signed a settlement and cross-license agreement for the patents HP and Cenzic are currently asserting against one another. This agreement settles the outstanding litigations filed by SPI Dynamics (which was acquired by HP) in Federal Court in Georgia and filed by Cenzic in Federal Court in Virginia, and these lawsuits will be immediately dismissed,” Cenzic said in a press release on Monday.

At the time of the lawsuits, SPI Dynamics came under harsh criticism in the security community for the patents. Software patents have become a divisive topic in the industry, especially in the security community, where methods for identifying software flaws or malware are typically quite similar. But that hasn’t stopped many vendors from applying for, and receiving, patents on various methods and technologies.

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