Tuesday, October 19, 2010, 10/19/2010 11:04:00 AM

The Trade Secrets of the Predator Drone's Software Systems

By Todd

ComputerWorld is reporting that a legal war is being fought over technology being used in the war in Afghanistan.

In a well-written piece by Jaikumar Vijayan, he reports that the Suffolk County (Massachusetts) Superior Court will soon decide if software vendor Netezza should be allowed to continue selling a product used by the CIA in its Predator drone program that another vendor claims is based on misappropriated technology.

The disputed Netezza technology was originally developed for and is currently integrated in targeting systems used by Predator drones in antiterrorist operations in Afghanistan, Iraq and elsewhere. It is also used in Netezza's Spatial technology, which the company started selling earlier this year.

Intelligent Integration Systems (IISi), a relatively small vendor of data analytics software, claims that Netezza stole its trade secrets and intellectual property (IP) in building the system for the CIA.

The company is seeking a court order that would bar Netezza from using and reselling the disputed technologies.

In its motion seeking a preliminary injunction, IISi accused Netezza of secretly reverse-engineering IISi's technology and of knowingly selling a seriously flawed "hack" of the original software to the CIA.

This battle isn't over - we'll keep an eye on this one for you.


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