Splunk vs Cribl Lawsuit of Terms Violating Enterprise License

The Splunk-Cribl lawsuit is poised to go to trial. Both companies are suing over alleged violations of enterprise license terms.

The case, brewing since October 2022, has now escalated to the point where the intricacies of software licensing and intellectual property are under the judicial microscope.

The dispute centers around accusations from Splunk, recently acquired by Cisco that Cribl has infringed upon multiple Splunk copyrights and patents.

Splunk’s legal team has claimed that Cribl, under the leadership of co-founder and CEO Clint Sharp—a former senior director of product management at Splunk—has unlawfully appropriated Splunk source code and confidential materials.

In a dramatic twist, the U.S. District Court in California has revealed that Cribl had been serially downloading trial versions of Splunk Enterprise despite holding an annual renewable corporate license.

This fact, which emerged during pretrial proceedings, casts doubt over Cribl’s intentions and usage of Splunk’s software, potentially undermining the ‘Internal Business Purposes’ clause stipulated in the Splunk General Terms.

Clint Sharp has denied the allegations, claiming that the intellectual property in question was based on code previously shared by Splunk under an Apache license on GitHub.

Sharp has characterized the lawsuit as “completely fabricated” and an act of “lawfare” against Cribl.

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He has expressed hope for a settlement before the trial. Still, he firmly believes that the litigation severely threatens the industry’s fair use standards, which are crucial for software interoperability and testing.

As the trial date threatens, the legal community and tech industry observers keenly watch the proceedings.

The outcome of this case could have far-reaching implications for software licensing agreements, intellectual property rights, and the competitive dynamics within the log management market.

The tech industry is no stranger to legal disputes, but the Splunk vs. Cribl case stands out for its potential to set precedents in how enterprise software licenses are interpreted and enforced.

With both parties searching on their heels, the tech world awaits a resolution that will undoubtedly ripple across the sector.

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Divya is a Senior Journalist at Cyber Security news covering Cyber Attacks, Threats, Breaches, Vulnerabilities and other happenings in the cyber world.