Apple is suing a former iOS engineer for allegedly leaking details of the Vision Pro and Journal app

Apple has sued a former employee for allegedly leaking confidential information, including little-known details about Apple's Journal app, development of its VisionOS headset, and more, to journalists and other company employees. The lawsuit was filed ten days ago in California state court (24CV433319pdf), Andrew O'Dea also says he leaked regulatory compliance strategies, headcount, and other product hardware characteristics.

As previously mentioned from MacRumorsIn at least one message, the company says Aude claimed he leaked information “so he could ‘kill’ products and features he objected to.”

Apple pointed to several connections in the lawsuit:

Between June and September 2023 alone, Mr. O'Dea communicated with a Wall Street Journal (WSJ) journalist, whom Mr. O'Dea called “Homeboy,” more than 1,400 times using an encrypted messaging app. Mr. Aude also read “Homeboy,” the definitive feature list for Apple's unannounced phone product. Mr. Audi sent another journalist to the information Over 10,000 text messages and I traveled across the continent to meet her.

The following screenshot of an encrypted message exchange on Signal between Aude and a Wall Street Journal journalist appears in the complaint, Apple says, “Mr. Aude would often take and save screenshots of his communications on his Apple-issued work iPhone to preserve them for posterity.

Apple accuses Aude of leaking the final feature list for the Apple Journal app in an April 2023 phone call to the same reporter. a story about Unreleased app features It appeared in the same month The Wall Street Journal.

Aude joined Apple in 2016 as an iOS engineer focused on improving battery performance. The nature of the role gave Aude access to “information regarding dozens of Apple’s most sensitive products,” Apple lawyers write.

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The company says the leaks were not discovered until late 2023. When Apple representatives first sat down with Aude in November 2023, he reportedly denied involvement in the leaks and lied about having his Apple-issued iPhone with him. After that, they allege he pretended to need to go to the bathroom, “removed his iPhone from his pocket during a break and permanently deleted large amounts of evidence from his device,” including the Signal app.

Then, at a second meeting on December 12, the complaint says, “Mr. Aude admitted that he leaked information about Apple's regulatory compliance strategies, unannounced products, development policies, and hardware characteristics of certain released products to at least two journalists.” He was fired three days later. Apple's filing says the company is seeking a jury trial, damages, “restitution and/or rescission” of bonuses and stock options, as well as “an order directing Mr. Aude not to disclose confidential and proprietary Apple information to third parties.” Without its written consent.

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