Finjan Software, which makes security applications and appliances aimed at fighting viruses and other forms of malicious code, has filed a lawsuit against rival Secure Computing and the companys CyberGuard and Webwasher subsidiaries.
Filed in the United States District Court for the District of Delaware, the lawsuit seeks a permanent injunction against Secure Computing, CyberGuard and Webwasher barring the further sale of the firms Webwasher Secure Content Management package.
Like some of Finjans own products, the Webwasher software is aimed at helping customers stop spam e-mail, block employee access to restricted Web sites, eliminate viruses and control the dissemination of confidential information.
A spokesperson for Secure Computing said the company had no comment on Finjans legal claim.
Apparently unfazed by the lawsuit, Secure Computing released a new Webwasher Secure Content Management Suite to its channel partners June 5.
While details of the purported patent infringement remain slim, Finjan indicated that the lawsuit revolves around Web security software properties it registered as far back as a decade ago.
The company said only that the intellectual property involved in the current patent infringement case relates to "systems and methods for protecting a computer and a network from hostile downloadables and malicious code," filed Nov. 8, 1996.
In 2005, software giant Microsoft purchased a minority stake in Finjan, even after the firms had battled publicly over their respective malware reporting policies.
Financial terms of the transaction and the size of Microsofts equity stake were not released; however, the deal was brokered as part of a non-exclusive patent licensing agreement that lets Microsoft use select Finjan patents.
Microsoft isnt the only third-party vendor with a minority stake in Finjan.
In 2004, Cisco Systems Inc. led a $10 million round of financing for the San Jose, Calif.-based security startup.
Benchmark Capital, Bessemer Venture Partners and Israel Seed Partners also participated in the round.