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Apple loses VirnetX patent trial, ordered to pay $368M


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In a late-night ruling from a federal jury in Texas on Tuesday, Apple was ordered to pay $368 million for violating a VPN patent owned by software company VirnetX.

Along with the suit decided today, VirnetX also filed complaints with the U.S. International Trade Commission alleging that Apple's products, specifically the iPhone, iPad and Mac, violate the company's wireless patents, reports AllThingsD. VirnetX previously won a $200 million settlement from Microsoft as a result of a separate lawsuit.

The Texas complaint against Apple was first leveled in November 2011, when VirnetX claimed technology being used in Apple's iPhone 4S infringed on the company's patent for U.S. Patent No. 8,05,181 for a "Method for Establishing Secure Communication Link Between Computers of Virtual Private Network." According to the invention's filing, the patent was granted just days before being leverage against Apple in court.

VirnetX lodged a similar complaint with the ITC, however in August, the commission sided with a trade judge's ruling who terminated the case over questions of patent ownership. The company vowed to file a new complaint.

In yet another VirnetX filing in 2010, the company brought similar allegations against Apple, Cisco Systems, Astra Technologies, and NEC Corporation, claiming infringement of at least five patents.