SOURCE: InsWeb

February 25, 2008 18:08 ET

InsWeb Files Answer in Patent Infringement Lawsuit Brought by Autobytel

SACRAMENTO, CA--(Marketwire - February 25, 2008) - InsWeb Corp. (NASDAQ: INSW), a leading online insurance marketplace, today announced that it has filed its answer in the patent infringement lawsuit brought by Autobytel, Inc. Consistent with its previous public disclosures, InsWeb's answer includes contentions that the Autobytel patent is invalid and/or unenforceable against InsWeb. Specifically, InsWeb argues that its accused infringing technology has not materially changed since 1997, a date that precedes Autobytel's patent application by more than one year. Moreover, as InsWeb's long-time business partner, Autobytel knew of InsWeb's business processes for many years without complaining of infringement. Autobytel knew or should have known of these facts, but nonetheless chose to proceed with this litigation.

"It is difficult for us to discern any legitimate motive behind the decision by Autobytel's management to sue InsWeb, a long-standing business partner, based on a patent that (by its express terms) was issued entirely in the context of a process used to refer a customer looking for a new or used vehicle to an auto dealership," said Hussein Enan, InsWeb's Chairman & CEO. "InsWeb's technology is directed towards enabling consumers to shop online for a variety of insurance products. Although Autobytel's 2006 Annual Report on Form 10-K acknowledges that its patent may not be valid or enforceable, it also explains that Autobytel intends 'to grow and advance our business, in part, through enforcing and strengthening our intellectual property rights.' By filing this lawsuit Autobytel's management appears ready to test the limits of this potentially invalid patent by suing companies outside the car buying industry if they facilitate, through the internet, a consumer's on-line purchase of goods and services from other suppliers."

InsWeb also announced the termination of its business relationship with Autobytel. As noted above, the parties had a website linking arrangement for many years. However, InsWeb is electing to exercise its termination rights rather than continue its association with Autobytel. The termination will not impact InsWeb's financial results because the consumer traffic formerly acquired from Autobytel will be replaced by traffic from other partners.

About InsWeb

InsWeb (NASDAQ: INSW) enables consumers to compare multiple, actionable quotes for auto, term life, health, homeowners, renters and condominium insurance offerings from many of the nation's highly rated insurers. The top-rated online insurance marketplace also provides interactive tools and independent research. Headquartered in Sacramento, Calif., InsWeb is accessible at www.insweb.com.

For further information regarding InsWeb Corporation, please review the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and Annual Reports on Form 10-K, and in particular Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations.

This news release contains forward-looking statements reflecting management's current forecast of certain aspects of the Company's future. It is based on current information, which we have assessed, but which by its nature is dynamic and subject to rapid and even abrupt changes. Forward-looking statements include statements expressing the intent, belief or current expectations of the Company and members of our management team. The Company's actual results might differ materially from those stated or implied by such forward-looking statements due to risks and uncertainties associated with the Company's business. The forward-looking statements should be considered in the context of these and other risk factors disclosed in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

"INSWEB" and "AGENTINSIDER" are registered service marks of InsWeb Corporation. All marks above are those of InsWeb Corporation, except for those of insurance insurers, brokers, agents, industry organizations, financial institutions, online partners, service providers, other mentioned companies and educational institutions, which are the marks of their respective entities.

Contact Information

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