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M$ Vole sued over Hamster

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Legal

SOFTWARE GIANT Microsoft and its IP Ventures division have received a writ from Artemis Solutions Group alleging that the Vole has breached its trademark and engaged in unfair competition.

The complaint, filed in a Texas district court, said that Artemis owns a trademark called Biocert (2,817,357) and that it's used this mark continually for several years. The firm said it markets and distributes products using the Biocert mark including fingerprint authentication toolkits for developers (wwww.biocert.us), fingerprint USB memory keys (www.clipbio.com), and in Biocert Oddysey - a portable fingerprint biometric USB hard drive.

Artemis also said it makes the Biocert Hamster, Optimouse and Keyboard - also biometric devices (www.mybiocert.com/peripherals.htm).

But Artemis claims that in early May, Microsoft and its IP Venture firm started using the term Biocert without permission, "even though the most rudimentary trademark search would have revealed" Artemis was already using it.

Artemis also alleges that it's been using the term Biocert when it talked to hacks, to venture capitalists, and to others.

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