Intel is taking legal action against a former employee who is accused of stealing trade secrets. According to The Oregonian, Intel is suing Varun Gupta for providing Microsoft with secrets once he moved to the Redmond company.
Gupta left Intel and joined Microsoft in January 2020. Intel says he took two full USB drives with intel from the company. He then plugged one drive into a laptop provided by Microsoft and downloaded the information.
When Microsoft became aware of the situation, it informed Intel and is now helping the company with its lawsuit. Legal documents show Gupta discarded the second USB drive. Together the two drives held 3,900 documents related to Intel data.
“In his new role at Microsoft, Gupta used the confidential information and trade secrets he misappropriated from Intel, deploying that information in head-to-head negotiations with Intel concerning customized product design and pricing for significant volumes of Xeon processors,” Intel wrote in the filing.
Intel started proceedings against Gupta on February 5 and the case is before the U.S. District Court in Portland. No information has been given on what Intel is seeking in terms of compensation. However, the company is asking for attorney fees and an injunction to stop the former employee saying what was on the drives.
Microsoft and Intel are long-time partners. Even so, Microsoft was never going to allow any employee to provide trade secrets. Doing so would have landed the company in massive trouble. Instead, Microsoft told Intel and is helping the chipmaker with its court case.
“Intel has invested billions of dollars in the development of the intellectual property critical to its success in some of the most competitive industries in the world,” Intel added in a written statement Monday. “We place great faith and trust in our current and former employees, but we have an obligation to protect our intellectual property and other proprietary information, and we will not hesitate to act to prevent their misappropriation.”
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