Apple has Sued an Ex-employee for Revealing Confidential Projects to Media

By Consultants Review Team Saturday, 30 March 2024

Apple has filed a lawsuit, claiming that confidential information regarding projects, including the recently released Journal app, was leaked. This revelation occurs just a few days after the US Department of Justice filed a lawsuit against the iPhone manufacturer for allegedly constructing a walled garden around its products and ecosystem. This time, Apple claims that a former iOS software engineer named Andrew Aude disclosed information about its top-secret projects. As a result, Apple requests a jury trial in addition to damages exceeding $25,000.

According to the case, which was filed in a California state court and was obtained by MacRumors, Aude violated labor regulations in addition to Apple's confidentiality agreement. Upon joining Apple in 2016, Aude worked on initiatives that gave him access to confidential information on several highly sensitive projects, such as attempts to optimize battery performance.

Using his work-issued iPhone, the former employee disclosed information regarding over six projects during a five-year period. This includes Vision Pro, the company's first mixed-reality headgear, and the then-unannounced Journal app. The complaint asserts that, despite Apple's development efforts being secret and unknown to the public, Aude disclosed this information. In the months that followed, Mr. Aude revealed more secret information about Apple, such as details on upcoming products and hardware.

According to the complaint, Aude deliberately gave a Wall Street Journal reporter information about the Journal app's finished feature set over the phone in 2023. Soon after, an article headlined "Apple Plans iPhone Journaling App in Expansion of Health Initiatives" was submitted by writer Aaron Tilley of the same organization. Aude is also charged with using the encrypted communication software Signal to send 'over 1400' messages to Tilley and 'over 10000 messages' to another journalist at The Information.

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