Tesla Filed a Lawsuit Against Former Employee for Allegedly Stealing Software Code

Recently, the American electric vehicle company Tesla has prosecuted one of its retired employees; Telsa claimed that this employee was allegedly stealing company data. The lawsuit was filed in the US Northern District of California Court, and the name of the asserted perpetrator is Alex Khatilov, he is a Quality Assurance software engineer. 

The lawsuit states that Khatilov is accused of downloading nearly 26,000 files associating with Tesla’s Warp Drive backend software, and all these data were used to automate many of the company’s primary business methods. Moreover, Tesla has estimated that the files signify nearly “200 man-years of work.”

Nature of action

Telsa is trying to protect all its trade secrets from intentional theft by a former employee and making sure that it does not occur again. To save all its secrets, Tesla hired Defendant as a software automation engineer on December 28, 2020. 

That’s why, within three days, he started stealing thousands of highly classified software files from Tesla’ssecure private network, well transporting them to his special cloud storage account on Dropbox, to which Tesla has no access or distinctness. 

The Parties

We all know that Telsa is a corporation that is designed and surviving under the laws of Delaware. Along with its primary place of business are inhabited at 3500 Deer Creek Road, Palo Alto, California 94304.

However, Tesla develops, builds, sells, and leases electric vehicles and energy production and storage systems throughout the United States and abroad. According to the report that has been affirmed by Telsa, that Defendant Alex Khatilov is a former Tesla employee who also goes by the names Alex Tilov or Sabir Khatilov. 

Theft of Tesla’s business secrets and confidential data

Telsa is a very big company and known for all its innovation and development, however “QualityAssurance” methods that run a broad range of business function outwardly any human effort.

All these efforts include procurement, materials planning and processing, payables, and purchasing. But, Telsa is developing all these complex systems that are quite expensive and time-consuming. 

According to the report, Tesla has spent nearly 200 man-years of work to strengthen the Quality Assurance scripts and all the cumulative hours spent by the Quality Assurance Engineering team over the past twelve years.

Cause of Action

  • First Cause of Action:  Violation of the Defend Trade Secrets Act, 18 U.S.C. § 1831 et seq.
  • Second Cause of Action: Violation of California’s Uniform Trade Secrets Act, Cal. Civ. Code § 3426 et seq
  • Third Cause of Action: Breach of Contract

Moreover, the investigators are still trying their best to bypass all the threats and issues regarding the conflicts. However, in 2019 Tesla had sued self-driving startup Zoox, accusing four of its employees, who had previously worked at Tesla, of taking and stealing confidential documents.

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BALAJI is an Ex-Security Researcher (Threat Research Labs) at Comodo Cybersecurity. Editor-in-Chief & Co-Founder - Cyber Security News & GBHackers On Security.