Uniloc goes after Sony, McAfee

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Uniloc goes after Sony, McAfee

More court action over anti-piracy patents.

Uniloc, a privately held US company with Australian origins that last year sued Microsoft for infringing its anti-piracy patent, is now going after Sony and McAfee.  

The company successfully sued Microsoft for $446 million in September last year in the District Court of Rhode Island, only to have the decision overturned by a judge during an appeal.

The company has now issued a statement announcing that it has filed patent infringement action in a Texas district court against Sony America, security giant McAfee, desktop publisher, Quark, video game outfit, Activision, enterprise software maker, Borland Software, and Aspyr Media. 

Uniloc is claiming that these companies misused its anti-piracy activation method, which was patented in the 1990s by Australian inventor, Ric Richardson

"Patent infringement, especially when it's carried out by 'Captains of Industry' like Sony America and McAfee can kill a small business," Brad Davis, chief executive of Uniloc said.

"We decided to take legal action against Sony, McAfee, Activision, Quark and others to protect our products and our company."

Davis said the company had licensed its products to technology vendors since 1995, citing "clients past and present" including IBM and gaming console maker, Sega. Uniloc describes itself as physical device recognition technology company. 

The original jury verdict against Microsoft centered on the vendor's use of Uniloc's patented activation processes that Uniloc claimed was used within Windows XP and Office.

Uniloc was awarded it $446 million in damages in the Rhode Island court, but the decision was later overturned by a judge on the basis that the jury "lacked a grasp of the issues" at stake. 

Uniloc is currently appealing the Microsoft case. 

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