Shares of Palo Alto Networks jumped more than 11 percent on February 6 after a judge handed down a favorable decision for Palo Alto Networks in the patent infringement lawsuit brought by rival Juniper Networks.

The saga over patent infringement began in December 2011 when Juniper Networks sued Palo Alto Networks for infringing on several Juniper patents associated with next-generation firewalls.

The patents in question were developed by Palo Alto’s founders including Nir Zuk who is currently Palo Alto’s Chief Technology Officer (CTO), when they were working for Juniper-acquired NetScreen.

The U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware rejected the Juniper’s motion for summary judgment of patent infringement. However, the judge granted motions from Palo Alto Networks for summary judgment for two patents of no infringement based on the doctrine of equivalents. The trial date covering the remaining patents is set tentatively for late February.

Palo Alto Networks surged to its best levels since September 2012, with investors driving up prices to $66.94.

“We look forward to proving at trial that we do not infringe the Juniper patents.” Mark McLaughlin, the CEO of Palo Alto Networks, said in a statement.

Fahmida Y. Rashid is an accomplished security journalist and technologist. She is a regular contributor for several publications including where she is a networking and security analyst.  She also was a senior writer at eWeek where she covered security, core Internet infrastructure and open source. As well, she was a senior technical editor at CRN Test Center reviewing open source, storage, and networking products. 

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