by Josh Lowensohn – cnet
The day after acquiring EchoSign for its electronic signature technology, Adobe Systems and EchoSign are being sued by a company that claims EchoSign’s technology infringes on five of its patents.
Los Angeles-based RPost this morning filed a lawsuit against Adobe and EchoSign in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, Marshall Division, claiming EchoSign is infringing on RPost’s patented technology with its services.
RPost is asking the court for a permanent injunction against services from both companies, as well as damages on infringing products. Adobe yesterday said that it plans to integrate EchoSign’s services into SendNow, FormsCentral, and CreatePDF.
“The key element in any system of electronic signature is creating a legally meaningful audit trial of every step of the signature process and associating that audit trail with particular electronic document content,” RPost CEO Zafar Khan said in a statement about the lawsuit. “When part of that audit trail involves e-mail, it is on our turf: we pioneered the technology for proof of e-mail and document delivery, including recording recipient reply or signoff on the message content, and have the patents to prove it.”
An Adobe representative declined to comment on the suit, saying the company does not comment on pending litigation.
In a release about the legal action, RPost notes that it’s forced “would-be competitors” to shut down over the rights to use patents it holds, and that it has legal action pending against rival Docusign, the Swiss Post Office, the Canadian Post Office, and the U.S. Postal Service. The Docusign suit bears close resemblance to the one against EchoSign. That suit, which was filed earlier this month, took aim at the electronic signature rival for infringing on four of the five same patents it’s now using against Adobe and EchoSign.
The patent numbers RPost alleges EchoSign to be infringing include 6,182,219; 6,571,334; 7,707,624; 7,865,557 and 7,966,372. The earliest of those was filed for back in August 1996.
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