Malwarebytes has won a long-running lawsuit against a company whose software it characterised as 'potentially unwanted programs' during anti-malware scans.
Enigma Software, maker of SpyHunter and RegHunter security apps, had claimed that it was a "tortious interference" in its business, especially as users would typically follow the Malwarebytes recommendation to remove the software.
In response, Enigma - which doesn't necessarily enjoy an A1 reputation - filed suit against Malwarebytes.
However, the district court in Northern California sided with Malwarebytes. It ordered a clerk to close the case earlier this week.
In the official complaint filed by Enigma, it claimed that Malwarebytes had "unlawfully characterized Enigma's software as harmful to users' computers".
But Malwarebytes argued that Enigma was tricking customers into purchasing its solutions by making "false claims" contrary to the immunity provisions set out in the US Communications Decency Act.
The judgement was based, in part, on case law arising from the similar case of Zango Inc versus Kaspersky.
Malwarebytes founder and CEO Marcin Kleczynski said: "This is a critical win, not only for Malwarebytes, but for all security providers who will continue to have legal protection to do what is right for their users."
Writing on the company's blog, Kleczynski added that the court's decision means it can continue to flag-up potentially unwanted or useless software on behalf of users. "This decision affirms our right to enable users by giving them a choice on what belongs on their machines and what doesn't.
"We continue to monitor all known software against Malwarebytes' PUP criteria to give our users the choice to select which programs you want to keep or remove from your computer.
"We strongly believe that you should be allowed to make this choice, and we will continue to defend your right to do so."
He said users should have the right to choose what goes on their computers - and to remove them by whatever means if they want to. "This company was founded on a real problem I experienced and a dream that everyone at Malwarebytes still affirms: that computer users have a right to choose what's on their computers.
"As PUPs became more prevalent and problematic, we began offering protection against them too, a choice that is now backed by the United States District Court."
Enigma no doubt targeted Malwarebytes, rather than a larger security software company, because at the time it was still largely freeware.
Kleczynski started Malwarebytes as a teenager after he contracted a virus on his own home PC, and decided to sort it out himself.
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