Former Microsoft employee busted for leaking Windows 8 secrets to French blogger

Mar 20, 2014
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Former Microsoft employee busted for leaking Windows 8 secrets to French blogger

Software giant Microsoft and the police take the theft of trade secrets very seriously. A former Microsoft employee named Alex Kibkalo has been arrested for allegedly stealing trade secrets from Microsoft having to do with Windows 8. Kibkalo was a senior architect at Microsoft in the past.

The man was arrested on Wednesday. The complaint filed against the man alleges that he passed trade secrets on Windows 8 to a tech blogger in France. Exactly who the tech blogger that received the secret details was is unknown.

Microsoft alleges that Kibkalo uploaded proprietary software to his personal Windows Live SkyDrive account. The software uploaded is said to have included pre-release updates for Windows 8 RT and ARM devices and the Microsoft Activation Server Software Development kit. The software was initially uploaded to a computer in Redmond, Washington before being transferred to the SkyDrive account.

Through ZDNet we're to understand that the blogger who received the information is said by Microsoft to be known in the blogging community for posting screenshots of unreleased Windows software. The complaint says that Kibkalo has admitted to leaking the confidential information to the blogger. There is no word on what sort of legal ramifications the man faces for leaking the software.

UPDATE: Microsoft has released a statement on the subject which reads as follows:

"During an investigation of an employee we discovered evidence that the employee was providing stolen IP, including code relating to our activation process, to a third party. In order to protect our customers and the security and integrity of our products, we conducted an investigation over many months with law enforcement agencies in multiple countries. This included the issuance of a court order for the search of a home relating to evidence of the criminal acts involved. The investigation repeatedly identified clear evidence that the party involved intended to sell Microsoft IP and had done so in the past.

As part of the investigation, we took the step of a limited review of this third party’s Microsoft operated accounts. While Microsoft’s terms of service make clear our permission for this type of review, this happens only in the most exceptional circumstances. We apply a rigorous process before reviewing such content. In this case, there was a thorough review by a legal team separate from the investigating team and strong evidence of a criminal act that met a standard comparable to that required to obtain a legal order to search other sites. In fact, as noted above, such a court order was issued in other aspects of the investigation." - Microsoft Spokesperson

This statement was shared with Business Insider. Stay tuned as we continue to keep a keen eye on this investigation.


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