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Construction Software Vendor Sues To Block Microsoft's Use Of 'Forefront' Name

Dexter & Chaney says it's been using that name since 1988, and that Microsoft's recent decision to use the "Forefront" brand for its security software risks confusing Dexter's customers.
A Seattle maker of construction software sued Microsoft in federal district court on Friday for using the name "Forefront" for a new line of security software. Dexter & Chaney said it had been using the name Forefront for its software since 1988, and that Microsoft's move risked confusing Dexter's customers.

Dexter & Chaney uses the Forefront brand for software for managing construction jobs. In June, Microsoft said it would rename its business security software Forefront. In a statement, Dexter said it had asked Microsoft to stop using the name and needed to take legal action to protect itself from harm that would result from confusing customers and prospects.

Microsoft released a statement Friday in which it said Microsoft's Forefront products sell in an entirely different market than Dexter & Chaney's, and that the company didn't believe its use of the name Forefront would confuse the market.

Shares of Microsoft closed Friday up 52 cents, at $26.85.