In an inside memo to workers, Apple threatened extreme penalties for leaking confidential firm info – reminding workers that those that leak can lose their jobs, have tough discovering future employment, and even get arrested. Last yr, Apple claimed to have busted 29 leakers, 12 of whom have been arrested.
The memo itself was leaked, and its content material was revealed by Bloomberg this afternoon.
Apple has all the time cultivated a tradition of confidentially about its work, as a method of sustaining a aggressive benefit over the competitors.
Given how giant Apple has grown over time – the memo says there are “135,000 people” working there – it’s turn out to be tougher to maintain issues underneath wraps. By the time a brand new iPhone launches, for instance, folks already know what to anticipate. That may give rivals a head begin on catching up with Apple, forward of an precise public unveiling of the machine. Leaks may influence gross sales of present units, as shoppers maintain off on shopping for as they know one thing higher is quickly to reach.
Apple extra lately has had issues with leaked iOS supply code, in addition to leaked particulars concerning the iPhone eight and X, Apple Watch Series three, Apple TV 4K, HomePod, and extra. And that was simply in 2017.
The new memo isn’t the primary time Apple has tried to plug its leaks. Last yr, the corporate held a gathering with workers the place it mentioned the way it plans to forestall leaks, talked about how leakers have been caught, and answered workers’ questions.
That assembly was secretly recorded and leaked to the press too.
In actuality, some leaks might be more durable to trace or cease. An organization-wide assembly or e mail, as an example, may very well be leaked by anybody.
The new memo begins by informing Apple workers that the one that leaked particulars about Apple’s software program roadmap earlier this yr was caught and fired final month:
Last month, Apple caught and fired the worker answerable for leaking particulars from an inside, confidential assembly about Apple’s software program roadmap. Hundreds of software program engineers have been in attendance, and hundreds extra inside the group acquired particulars of its proceedings. One individual betrayed their belief.
The worker who leaked the assembly to a reporter later advised Apple investigators that he did it as a result of he thought he wouldn’t be found. But individuals who leak — whether or not they’re Apple workers, contractors or suppliers — do get caught and so they’re getting caught sooner than ever.
The memo then goes on to emphasize how damaging leaks are to the…