A former Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) employee has been charged for leaking trade secrets to a blogger in France, revealed court documents. Alex Kibkalo, a Russian national and an ex-employee of Microsoft Lebanon and Russia, has admitted to the company authorities that he has passed confidential documents to a blogger, according to the documents from the Seattle federal court.
Blogger admitted the charges
The ID of the blogger has not been identified, but the blogger has been a popular figure in the Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) blogging community for posting screenshots of yet to be released version of the Windows Operating System. The blogger smartly covered his identity by falsely stating that he is from Quebec, court documents showed.
An investigation carried internally by Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) showed unauthorized transfer of proprietary and confidential trade secrets. As a proof, an email from Kibkalo was traced in the bloggers Hotmail account. The investigation revealed that, in July and August 2012, Kibkalo uploaded proprietary software to a computer in Washington, and also on his personal Windows Live SkyDrive account. The information uploaded included pre-release updates for Windows 8 RT and ARM devices, and the Microsoft Activation Server Software Development Kit (SDK). SDK is used by the internal teams to customize their product ensuring proper validation.
Still working for another U.S. firm
In an emailed statement to Reuters, Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) spokesman told “”We take protection of our intellectual property very seriously, including cooperating with law-enforcement agencies who are investigating potential criminal actions by our employees or others.”
As revealed by the court documents, blogger admitted of selling Windows Server activation keys on eBay, and posting information on Twitter and his websites.
The court documents, also, showed that Kibkalo had been with the Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) for seven years. The employee received a poor performance review in 2012, so, he threatened to resign if the appraisal was not changed. As of now, Kibkalo has moved back to Russia, according to an FBI agent part of the investigation, and his LinkedIn account reveal that he is working for a U.S.-based technology company with offices in Moscow and St. Petersburg.
The case is in USA v. Kibkalo, Case No 2:14-mj-00114-MAT, U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington at Seattle.