Tesla Sues Former Employee for Stealing Supercomputer Secrets

Daniel Attoe
Daniel Attoe

Updated · May 09, 2022

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The engineer moved the stolen data to personal devices.

Sued for Stealing Trade Secrets

Tesla has initiated a lawsuit against a former employee for allegedly stealing information relating to its Doja supercomputer technology. It has accused Alexander Yatskov, a former engineer, of downloading data to his personal devices and turning over a dummy machine instead.

Project Dojo is a supercomputer that Tesla optimized for processing large data sets used for training its AI software. Musk said that the company plans to offer machine learning training as a web service with the supercomputer. 

As seen in a court filing accessed by Bloomberg, Yatskov left Tesla on May 2nd after just four months. He had to help design the computer’s cooling systems. According to the EV company, the engineer admitted to collecting confidential information without permission when confronted.

All of Tesla’s engineers sign a non-disclosure agreement to prevent keeping or sharing confidential information about Dojo. Yatskov, however, violated it.

He’s accused of “removing Tesla confidential information from work devices and accounts, accessing it on his own personal devices, and creating Tesla documents containing confidential Project Dojo details on a personal computer.” 

That aside, the company alleges that Yatskov made false claims about his experience and abilities. He was “repeatedly unable” to carry out the tasks assigned to him.

Tesla keeps its trade information secret for good reason.

“Access to the Tesla Trade Secrets would enable engineers at other companies to reverse engineer Tesla’s Trade Secrets to create similar supercomputer thermal systems in a fraction of the time and with a fraction of the expense it took Tesla to build it,” the company stated in the lawsuit.

Sources.

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Daniel Attoe

Daniel Attoe

Daniel is an Economics grad who fell in love with tech. His love for books and reading pushed him into picking up the pen - and keyboard. Also a data analyst, he's taking that leap into data science and machine learning. When not writing or studying, chances are that you'll catch him watching football or face-deep in an epic fantasy novel.

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