Facebook buys 750 IBM patents

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Facebook has purchased 750 patents from IBM as the social networking site looks to protect itself from infringement action.

The social network is said to have paid "hundreds of millions" of dollars for the patents, according to a Bloomberg report.

The purchase is seen as a defensive move against Yahoo, which is suing Facebook over alleged patent infringement. Yahoo claims that the social networking site infringed 10 patents, which cover technology using online advertising.

"This is a very big deal," said Erin-Michael Gill, an intellectual property expert at investment bank MDB. Although it's not clear how strong the patents are, Gill said "Facebook is now where it's supposed to be".

The patents bought by Facebook cover technologies including software and networking.

Facebook has previously bought patents from other tech giants and social networks, including HP and Friendster.

The latest purchase comes as Facebook plans to carry out the biggest ever Internet IPO, which could see the company valued at $100 billion.

Rory Bathgate
Features and Multimedia Editor

Rory Bathgate is Features and Multimedia Editor at ITPro, overseeing all in-depth content and case studies. He can also be found co-hosting the ITPro Podcast with Jane McCallion, swapping a keyboard for a microphone to discuss the latest learnings with thought leaders from across the tech sector.

In his free time, Rory enjoys photography, video editing, and good science fiction. After graduating from the University of Kent with a BA in English and American Literature, Rory undertook an MA in Eighteenth-Century Studies at King’s College London. He joined ITPro in 2022 as a graduate, following four years in student journalism. You can contact Rory at rory.bathgate@futurenet.com or on LinkedIn.