Apple Sues Former Employee for Stealing Trade Secrets and Sharing It with Media

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Apple has accused its former employee of leaking trade secrets to the media. Simon Lancaster is a former materials lead who Apple has dragged to the court. The lawsuit says Lancaster misused his “position and trust within the company to systematically disseminate Apple’s sensitive trade secret information to obtain personal benefits.”

Despite over a decade of employment at Apple, Lancaster abused his position and trust within the company to systematically disseminate Apple’s sensitive trade secret information in an effort to obtain personal benefits. He used his seniority to gain access to internal meetings and documents outside the scope of his job’s responsibilities containing Apple’s trade secrets, and he provided these trade secrets to his outside media correspondent.

After leaving Apple, Lancaster joined the materials research and development company Arris. Interestingly the company is an Apple vendor, and the lawsuit accuses him of using trade secrets to benefit the new company. Furthermore, Lancaster is accused of giving out trade secret to the media outlet.

In 2018 a reported contacted Lancaster, a year before he left Apple. It is alleged that he exchanged trade secrets with the reported throughout 2018 and 2019. Furthermore, the media outlet has published trade secrets in a series of articles attributed to a “source” at Apple.

Lancaster is accused of downloading a “substantial number” of confidential Apple documents on the last day into his personal computer. It included an update to existing lineups and product plans for upcoming devices. He has attended multiple “Project X” meetings at Apple and shared the same with the reporter. The company had warned Lancaster numerous times not to participate in the meetings as he left the company.

Apple demands a trial by jury and is also asking for injunctive relief, punitive damages, restitution and reimbursement of the trial cost.

[via AppleInsider]