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Dell EMC claims trade secrets stolen

Dell EMC former employees are being accused of violating their employment contract by stealing trade secrets before beginning new employment with Rubrik. Rubrick and EMC are competing companies, both in the data protection business.

The two employees were in sales; one was a district sales manager and the other an account manager. In addition to allegedly stealing trade secrets, the former employees are also accused of soliciting Dell EMC customers. EMC says the former district sales manager caused the company to lose a sale deal valued at approximately $1.2 million.

According to EMC, one of the employees, after receiving an offer from Rubrik, downloaded trade secrets from his laptop to an external drive. The account manager, who later followed his ex-coworker by going to work for Rubrik, also allegedly copied sensitive documents to a USB drive. EMC claims to have discovered this only after they forensically analyzed the former employee's laptop.

Rubrik is also said to have hired at least 18 of EMC's employees over the past year. The former sales executive has been accused of soliciting EMC staff.

This is not the first time EMC has claimed trade secrets have been stolen from former employees. In 2013, EMC filed a lawsuit against ex-employees who went to work for Pure Storage. The suit carried similar allegations and resulted in a settlement of $30 million in 2016, which was paid to Dell Technologies, who acquired EMC.

The former employees deny the charges. A third former sales employee, who also went to work at Rubrik, was accused of copying trade secrets and soliciting clients back in November 2017. He denied the allegations, and the case was dismissed with prejudice in February.

Company trade secrets are usually protected by noncompete clauses in employment agreements. But there are many different kinds of trade secrets, as well as different options and ways for protecting your intellectual property. In California, an attorney who deals in patent, trademark and trade secrets litigation can provide the assistance you need to protect your intellectual property.

Source: The Register, "Dell EMC in bid to clap trade secrets injunction on staff now at Rubrik," Chris Mellor, March 05, 2018

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