Apple walloped with $368M in damages in VirnetX patent suit

The tech giant gets hit with a hefty judgment for allegedly infringing on VirnetX's network patents, which incorporate products like FaceTime.

Dara Kerr Former senior reporter
Dara Kerr was a senior reporter for CNET covering the on-demand economy and tech culture. She grew up in Colorado, went to school in New York City and can never remember how to pronounce gif.
Dara Kerr

A Texas court ordered Apple to pay $368.2 million in damages to the patent holding and security software company VirnetX today. According to Bloomberg, which broadcast the news on Twitter, Apple is being fined over infringement of VirnetX's network patents.

In the suit, VirnetX claimed that Apple integrated these network patents into its products like FaceTime, according to 9to5Mac. Originally VirnetX was asking for $900 million, but apparently the jury decided $368 million was enough.

VirnetX is well known for going after major tech companies for patent infringement. In its early days, the company aggressively patented technology that created virtual private networks over the Internet. It wasn't long before nearly every big tech company was doing the same. VirnetX eventually sued Microsoft and won a settlement for $200 million. Now it's suing Cisco, Avaya, and other big companies.

The U.S. International Trade Commission announced last month that its members voted to begin another investigation into Apple on behalf of VirnetX. The complaint filed against Apple said the tech giant infringed on VirnetX's patent that covers a secure connection between two computers over a network. In this suit, VirnetX aims to halt the importation of Apple products into the U.S., though the two companies are likely to reach a settlement or licensing deal instead.