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VeriSign in dispute over news content

VeriSign is in hot water over a dispute with the Associated Press over the use of AP content by its Moreover Technologies news aggregation service.

The AP filed the lawsuit in U.S. District Court against VeriSign to stop Moreover from aggregating the content. The AP is also seeking damages. The lawsuit comes after the AP said it sent a letter in September asking Moreover to stop using its content as part of the service without a license.

VeriSign acquired Moreover in 2005 and incorporated the company’s aggregation services with a global feed management infrastructure developed by VeriSign.

So how did a security company acquire a news aggregation service in the first place?

VeriSign is not necessarily a security company. It was part of RSA’s security division, but spun-off in 1995. It’s more of a network infrastructure player. It has two divisions: One that focuses on messaging encryption and authentication (SSL certificates, digital signatures and digital IDs for secure email and secure Web browsing.) and one that uses its secure infrastructure to focus on billing and commerce services, analytics and database services. VeriSign executives saw Moreover as a way to add RSS and feed-based publishing services to its infrastructure division.

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