Northrop and Cogent settle lawsuit, forge alliance

Northrop Grumman Corp. has agreed to pay Cogent Systems Inc. $25 million to settle litigation stemming from a lawsuit Cogent filed two years ago. The suit alleged that the defense and technology giant misappropriated Cogent's proprietary fingerprint identification technology for a key overseas project.

The settlement clears the way for companies to form a fresh alliance to provide identification technology and other biometrics to customers around the globe, the two companies said.

"Cogent's settlement with Northrop Grumman removes a major distraction and repairs [Cogent's] relationship with one of the most important biometrics system integrators," said Jeremy Grant, a research analyst with Stanford Group Company.

In an agreement announced yesterday, Northrop Grumman will pay Cogent $25 million and also pay an additional $15 million for a non-exclusive license to use specific Cogent fingerprint identification software in existing programs, such as Britain's IDENT1, a next-generation fingerprint identification system used by England and Wales.

In its 2005 lawsuit, Cogent alleged that Northrop Grumman had misappropriated proprietary technology for automated fingerprint identification software for use on the IDENT1 contract with the British Police Information Technology Organisation. That organization was replaced by the new National Policing Improvement Agency, which has a broader mission and more resources.

In the wake of the settlement, Northrop Grumman and Cogent plan to embark on a five-year research and development agreement through which Northrop Grumman will pay Congent $20 million for products and services.

The new strategic alliance will drive top-line growth for Cogent, Grant said. Moreover, it will bring Cogent into other Northrop Grumman biometric projects such as the Defense Department's Automated Biometric Identification System and the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services enrollment program, he said.

Cogent, based in South Pasadena, Calif., is a provider of biometric identification solutions. It offers automated fingerprint and palmprint identification systems.

Northrop Grumman ranks No. 3 on Washington Technology's 2007 Top 100 list of the largest federal government prime contractors.

About the Author

William Welsh is a freelance writer covering IT and defense technology.

Reader Comments

Please post your comments here. Comments are moderated, so they may not appear immediately after submitting. We will not post comments that we consider abusive or off-topic.

Please type the letters/numbers you see above

What is your e-mail address?

My e-mail address is:

Do you have a password?

Forgot your password? Click here


  • POWER TRAINING: How to engage your customers

    Don't miss our Aug. 2 Washington Technology Power Training session on Mastering Stakeholder Engagement, where you'll learned the critical skills you need to more fully connect with your customers and win more business. Read More


    In our latest Project 38 Podcast, editor Nick Wakeman interviews Tom Romeo, the leader of Maximus Federal about how it has zoomed up the 2019 Top 100. Read More

contracts DB

Washington Technology Daily

Sign up for our newsletter.

Terms and Privacy Policy consent

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.