Microsoft Sued Over Name Infringment

Dennis Faas's picture

Who hasn't sued Microsoft?

A quick Google search reveals lawsuits over music downloads, Xbox 360 defects, Xbox Live, Xbox internet, and Excel. And that's just the first page!

And now, you can add an alleged name infringement to the list.

At the heart of the situation is Microsoft's new line of Forefront security products (previously released under the MS "Client Protection" brand). Dexter + Chaney, a Seattle-based software company, is claiming the rights to the Forefront name.

"Construction companies throughout the United States know and respect the 'Forefront' name," Dexter + Chaney vice president of sales and marketing Brad Matthews stated. (Source:

Microsoft is sticking to its guns and refusing to change the name. The company doesn't believe that people will confuse its Forefront security products with Dexter + Chaney's Forefront construction software.

"We carefully review names for our new products and consider the possible use of those names by other companies to avoid any conflict," said Microsoft spokesman Jack Evans. "In this instance, we believe the specific use of the name Microsoft Forefront will not cause any confusion in the marketplace since the products and the channels of trade for them are significantly different." (Source:

Jupiter Research analyst Joe Wilcox did a Google search of his own, and he came up with a list of companies and products all using the Forefront moniker.

"ForeFront Records, Forefront Church, Bell Microproducts (which has, Forefront Curriculum and Forefront Television Products, among many, many others. Qualifying that I'm no lawyer, Forefont is widely used in company names," according to Wilcox. (Source:

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