Good News For Wireless Patent Owners – Improvement in Network Security Held to Be Patent-Eligible Subject Matter

By Dawn C. Kerner and Brandon R. Theiss On March 20, 2019, the Federal Circuit Court of Appeals issued an opinion that may bring some long-awaited good news for wireless patent holders. In particular, in SRI Int’l, Inc. v. Cisco Sys., the Federal Circuit found methods for improving security of a computer communication network to be patent-eligible subject matter under 35 U.S.C § 101. SRI Int’l, Inc. v. Cisco Sys. Inc., No. 2017-2223, 2019 U.S. App. LEXIS 8249, *1, *4 (Fed. Cir. 2019). This news comes in the wake of Federal Circuit decisions in 2016 and 2018, respectively, that found methods of 3G authentication and methods of filtering emails were not patent-eligible under 35 U.S.C § 101. See Intellectual Ventures I LLC v. Symantec Corp., 838 F.3d 1307 (Fed. Cir. 2016) and Prism Techs. LLC v. T-Mobile USA, Inc., 696 F. App’x 1014 (Fed. Cir. 2017). While the patents at issue in SRI were not specifically tailored to wireless networks, the Court’s…

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