Symantec plunges on suit fallout

The company's shares slump after it projects up to a $5 million loss as a result of an order issued in a suit brought by CyberMedia.

Shares of utility software maker Symantec fell as much as 15 percent today after the company projected that it could lose up to $5 million in revenues in the September quarter as a result of complying with the terms of a temporary restraining order issued in a copyright infringement lawsuit brought by rival CyberMedia.

Symantec stock was down 2.38 points or 14.62 percent at 13.88. The shares have traded as high as 32.63 and as low as 15.75 during the past 52 weeks.

Symantec said that, in order to erase any uncertainty caused by its ongoing battle with CyberMedia, it has removed the current version of Norton Uninstall Deluxe from Norton SystemWorks. Symantec also said it will discontinue shipping Norton Uninstall Deluxe, even as it pointed out that the uninstall product was developed by a third party.

The temporary restraining order was issued on Friday by the U.S. Federal Court in San Jose, California.

"We do not want to subject our customers and channel partners to the uncertainties of the legal process," said Enrique Salem, vice president of Symantec's Security and Assistance Business Unit. "We have taken steps to eliminate the uncertainty that surrounded the product."

CyberMedia filed suit against Symantec in February, alleging copyright infringement and trade-secret theft. According to the suit, the computer code in Symantec's Norton Uninstall Deluxe product was derived from CyberMedia's UnInstaller program.