IBM has filed a lawsuit against Micro Focus, accusing the Newbury-based enterprise software provider of illegally copying and reverse engineering IBM software in violation of copyright law. The copyright complaints included in the suit, filed November 21 in the US District Court in the Southern District of New York, allege that Micro Focus stole IBM's mainframe systems technology.The vendor says its mainframe systems are composed, in part, of its proprietary computers and software, and are designed to meet the changing needs of IBM's customers.IBM believes Micro Focus created software called Micro Focus Enterprise Server and Micro Focus Enterprise Developer (collectively, Micro Focus Enterprise Suite) by using its developer access to copy IBM's CICS Transaction Server for z/OS software. IBM claims the UK firm then published, distributed, and promoted the Micro Focus Enterprise Suite Micro Focus and continues to do so today.It also accused Micro Focus of entering into contracts to benefit from IBM's developer programs and gain access to its technology, and then purposefully breached the terms of those agreements to suit Micro Focus's own ends.IBM asserted that these actions constitute "illegal opportunism, willful infringement, and blatant breach of Micro Focus's contractual obligation" and undermine IBM's significant investments in software innovation. This violated IBM's intellectual property rights, undermined the investments it has made in software innovation, and unfairly deprived IBM of revenues attributable to its software, it said in its suit. "Micro Focus has brazenly stolen IBM software and we are going to protect IBM's product development investment from Micro Focus' illegal tactics," IBM said in a statement. "We've made significant investments over many decades in research and development of our industry-leading IBM mainframe system technology, to the great benefit of our trusted partners, our customers and the global economy. "We will aggressively defend IBM's intellectual property against those who attempt to steal it."IBM's complaint seeks monetary relief as well as an injunction against Micro Focus that would prohibit the company from continuing to harm IBM by illegally copying and distributing its software.Micro Focus has been contacted for comment.