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Microsoft Software Windows

Ex-Microsoft Employee Arrested For Leaking Windows 8 197

SmartAboutThings (1951032) writes "Alex Kibkalo, a former Microsoft employee has been arrested yesterday for stealing and leaking company secrets. The former software architecture engineer is accused of leaking early Windows 8 builds to a French tech blogger with whom he was communicating inside a forum. The ex-Microsoft employee also stands accused of leaking some Windows 7 program files and also an internal system meant to protect against software piracy. Kibkalo is said to have leaked the Windows 8 code in the middle of 2012 because he was angry over a poor performance review."
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Ex-Microsoft Employee Arrested For Leaking Windows 8

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  • Which is it? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Dan East ( 318230 ) on Thursday March 20, 2014 @09:33AM (#46533291) Journal

    Summary says he released early builds, then it says he leaked "Windows 8 code". Code and builds aren't the same thing. So which was it?

  • by nbritton ( 823086 ) on Thursday March 20, 2014 @10:27AM (#46533965)

    This is ridiculous. He did not deprive the owner of their property, the elements of theft have not been met. This should have been handled as a conversion claim in civil court. What I think is criminal is the corporation using their power to influence the criminal justice system.

  • by organgtool ( 966989 ) on Thursday March 20, 2014 @10:30AM (#46534019)
    On Slashdot, we often talk about how ridiculous it is that software is covered by copyright AND patents, but no one addresses the fact that source code is also covered under trade secret law. This is a conflict of interest and shows how screwed up our intellectual property system is. The intent of copyright is that you get protection in return for making your works public. But in the case of source code, companies get all of the protections of copyright law on that code without being required to ever actually release the code to the public. That is made evident by this exact case.

    Don't get me wrong - I'm not suggesting that every software development company should be forced to release its code, but I do think they should have to choose between receiving copyright protection by releasing the code or receive no copyright protection and keep the code guarded by trade secret. I can't think of any other industry that gets protection from both copyright and trade secret and I haven't heard anyone suggest why software should be made an exception.
  • H-1B? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by McGruber ( 1417641 ) on Thursday March 20, 2014 @11:00AM (#46534353)
    From the article:

    Alex Kibkalo, a former Microsoft employee has been arrested yesterday for stealing and leaking company secrets..... Kibkalo is a Russian national and has worked for Microsoft for seven years; he has joined 5nine Software in August 2013 as Director of Product Management for Security and Management products after quiting his job at Microsoft.

    I wonder how he worked for MS for 7 years as H1-B Visas are supposed to be limited to 6 years. []

  • Re:Stealing? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by gnupun ( 752725 ) on Thursday March 20, 2014 @11:30AM (#46534697)

    If I start a small corner store business making widgets, then hire you to help. I instruct you have to make my widgets, give you the tools and material to do it, pay you as we agreed, then you steal my inventory and give/sell it to someone then you are a THIEF.

    Everything you say is true when we're talking about general production of physical widgets -- the raw material and production equipment belong to you and your employee performs simple repetitive, non-creative actions to build the widget for you. But does that analogy also apply to intellectual property, like software? In this case, the employer pays for a chair, a desk, electricity, cube/office, and a computer with software. None of these items are terribly expensive and are one-time investments. A developer can easily purchase them himself.

    The employer then essentially provides a spec (which is often just a extremely vague set of requirements) and a monthly salary. We can therefore say that most of the software is created by the creative talent and skill (the raw material and machines in your analogy) of the developers. Does the work created by the software dev still completely belong to the employer for a few thousand dollars because of a few words written in the employment contract? I think not! Most of software is written by developers with little contribution from the employer and therefore should be licensed to the employer the same way a song is licensed by the musicians to record labels, how writers license their books to publishers etc.

Nothing is finished until the paperwork is done.