Tesla claims Autopilot manager stole data, poached staff

Tesla has sued Sterling Anderson for breaking his contract by launching a rival self-driving car firm

Tesla has sued a former Autopilot manager, accusing him of stealing company secrets and trying to poach staff when he departed earlier this month.

The Elon-Musk-founded car firm has filed suit against Sterling Anderson, saying the former staffer broke his contract and tried to hire away Tesla staff when he left to start his own self-driving car company with a former Google employee. Anderson disputes the allegations.

Advertisement - Article continues below

Anderson is accused of taking hundreds of gigabytes of Tesla data after downloading it to his personal hard drive, but also faces claims that he developed his own self-driving car tech while working for Tesla using its equipment and while he was supposed to be working on the company's Autopilot. He's also accused of wiping his company-provided iPhone to destroy evidence of his solicitation of Tesla employees.

"Tesla cannot sit idly by when an employee like Anderson abuses his position of trust and orchestrates a scheme to deliberately and repeatedly violate his non-solicit agreement, hide evidence, and take the company's confidential and proprietary information for use in a competing venture," Tesla said in the lawsuit, according to the Wall Street Journal.

In the lawsuit, Tesla is looking to stop Anderson and his partner, Chris Urmson formerly of Google's own self-driving car project from recruiting its staff for a year and using any of the data taken from Tesla for its own company, called Aurora Innovation.

Advertisement
Advertisement - Article continues below
Advertisement - Article continues below

Anderson and his startup Aurora dispute the allegations. "Tesla's meritless lawsuit reveals both a startling paranoia and an unhealthy fear of competition," Aurora said in a statement sent to Bloomberg. "This abuse of the legal system is a malicious attempt to stifle a competitor and destroy personal reputations. Aurora looks forward to disproving these false allegations in court and to building a successful self-driving business."

Advertisement

Recommended

Visit/610856/top-10-reasons-to-consider-flexible-working
Business strategy

Top 10 reasons to consider flexible working

18 Mar 2020
Visit/strategy/29101/six-ways-boards-can-step-up-support-for-cyber-security
Business strategy

Six ways boards can step up support for cyber security

27 Jan 2020
Visit/careers/28929/data-scientist-jobs-where-does-the-big-data-talent-gap-lie
Careers & training

Data scientist jobs: Where does the big data talent gap lie?

17 Sep 2019
Visit/strategy/29521/three-tips-for-effective-business-collaboration
Business strategy

Four tips for effective business collaboration

27 Aug 2019

Most Popular

Visit/development/application-programming-interface-api/355192/apple-buys-dark-sky-weather-app-and-leaves
application programming interface (API)

Apple buys Dark Sky weather app and leaves Android users in the cold

1 Apr 2020
Visit/data-insights/data-management/355170/oracle-cloud-courses-are-free-during-coronavirus-lockdown
data management

Oracle cloud courses are free during coronavirus lockdown

31 Mar 2020
Visit/business-strategy/flexible-working/355186/why-were-lucky-covid-19-has-come-now
flexible working

Why we’re lucky COVID-19 has come now

3 Apr 2020