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Last Updated: Friday, 13 July 2007, 10:45 GMT 11:45 UK
Sony BMG sues anti-piracy company
Alicia Keys
Alicia Keys was one of the artists affected by the CD debacle
Record company Sony BMG is suing a firm that designed controversial anti-piracy software used on CDs sold by the label.

Sony BMG filed papers in a New York state court seeking $12m in damages from the Arizona-based Amergence Group.

It says Amergence's Mediamax software landed it with a $5.75m (2.83m) bill for compensation after users reported problems with their computers.

Amergence disputes the claims and blames another company's software for the problems.

Amergence, formerly known as SunnComm, developed the Mediamax anti-piracy program, which was used on 32 Sony CDs released in the US and Canada.

In December 2005, Sony BMG issued a statement highlighting problems with the Mediamax software and urging users to install a patch that closed a security loophole which it said MediaMax opened on PCs.

At the same time, other consumers took action over Sony CDs that were being protected with another anti-piracy technology known as XCP.

Sony eventually recalled all the CDs that used XCP and offered to swap customers' existing discs for ones that did not use the software.

A statement from Amergence said the problems had resulted from "Sony's undertested release of a competitor's technology" and "BMG's 'final authority' input in determining the functional specifications of the Mediamax copy protection".

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