Suit explains why Apple engineer texted leaks to the media including the WSJ

Suit explains why Apple engineer texted leaks to the media including the WSJ


When former Apple engineer Andrew Aude ran into the bathroom during his breaks, he was using the time not to answer nature’s calls but to delete messaging apps on his phone. Those apps might have contained evidence that the software engineer was leaking information to the media. Per The New York Post, Apple has filed a lawsuit against Aude, who worked for the division responsible for Apple’s iPhone operating system iOS.

Ironically, the former software engineer used the iPhone given to him by Apple for work use to send thousands of text messages over five years to reporters from The Wall Street Journal and The Information. The suit against Aude was filed by Apple on March 18th in California Superior Court accusing him of sending leaks to the media to get certain products and features “that he took issue with” killed off by Apple.

Aude enjoyed being the center of attention from the media

Apple said that its former employee sought to undermine Apple through his “vanity” and his “personal enjoyment of the media’s attention” which Apple said “played a significant role in his malfeasance.”

For example, over four months, Aude sent more than 1,400 text messages to a Wall Street Journal reporter using the Signal encrypted messaging app. The lawsuit alleges that the former Apple employee called the WSJ reporter the name of “Homeboy” in these texts. It should be noted that The Wall Street Journal and the New York Post are both owned by News Corp.

In one screenshot of a text sent by Aude to “Homeboy” that appeared in the lawsuit, the disgraced former Apple employee wrote, “Can’t wait for chaos to break out before Apple corporate people even wake up.” The suit also cites a text Aude sent that said, “[I] love when I get to leak to my WSJ friend.”

As we said, the WSJ wasn’t the only media organization that Aude was in contact with in an attempt to get Apple to kill off certain features and features. The suit claims that more than 10,000 texts were sent from the former Apple software engineer to a reporter from The Information. The court filing also said that Aude “traveled across the continent to meet with her.” Another text from the software engineer mentioned in the lawsuit revealed that he wanted to “[expletive] with policy and [the] press.”

The former Apple employee made up an excuse allowing him to go to the bathroom to wipe evidence off of his iPhone

Last fall, Aude’s superiors had a sneaking suspicion that he had been leaking to the press, and when they confronted him about it, he “repeatedly denied that he had leaked any information to anyone.” He also told his bosses that he did not have his Apple-issued iPhone with him. But having said that, Aude came up with a ploy to remove the evidence from his phone which he actually did have on his person.

 “Feigning the need to visit the bathroom mid-interview, Mr. Aude then extracted his iPhone from his pocket during the break and permanently deleted significant amounts of evidence from his device,” according to the suit. On December 12th, Aude made a partial admission to Apple when he was asked about why the Signal app was deleted and “offered only narrow admissions limited to the information he had not been able to destroy.”

Apple offered Aude a chance to avoid litigation by cooperating with the investigation and revealing to Apple everything that he had leaked to the press. However, Aude refused to cooperate leading Apple to proceed with the suit which seeks unspecified damages from the terminated software engineer.


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