by CIO Staff

Restraining Order Issued Against Best Buy, Geek Squad in Infringement Suit

Apr 14, 20062 mins
IT Leadership

A federal copyright infringement lawsuit filed against Best Buy and its subsidiary Geek Squad has resulted in a temporary restraining order being issued against the company, demanding that it and Geek Squad immediately stop using pirated or unlicensed software from Winternals, a provider of systems recovery and data protection solutions for computer networks, according to an April 12 Winternals press release.

The suit, filed April 11 in Austin, Texas’ U.S. District Court, says Best Buy and Geek Squad “have previously and continue to knowingly and fraudulently utilize pirated and illegal copies of Winternals’ copyrighted software.”

Best Buy and its subsidiary allegedly approached Winternals in the fall of 2005 to inquire about licensing some of the company’s software, and the two entered into a “trial-and-test agreement” in which Winternals allowed Best Buy to use trial versions of some of its products to train employees, according to the release. However, the suit says that in February, Best Buy told Winternals it decided not to purchase a license for its software, but continued to use the products, violating the U.S. Copyright Act.

According to the company’s release, U.S. District Court Judge Sam Sparks’ order reads, “It is ordered that Best Buy, Best Buy Stores and Geek Squad immediately stop pirating, using, copying and/or distributing all unlicensed versions of the Winternals software. It is further ordered that the defendants and anybody controlled by the defendants shall not discard, waste or destroy any evidence whatsoever relating to the use of any unlicensed versions of the Winternals software.”

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