Secret Apple, Stolen iPhone 4G?
The Internet has been abuzz with popular tech-blog Gizmodo’s recent in-depth report on a potential iPhone prototype. Originally found in a bar in Redwood, CA, the prototype appears to be real, as Apple has requested its return immediately. Legally, Gizmodo now faces charges from Apple under California’s Uniform Trade Secrets Act, which protects trade secrets acquired through “improper means.” This includes “theft, bribery, misrepresentation, breach or inducement of a breach of duty to maintain secrecy, or espionage through electronic or other means.” Civil Code § 3426.1(a). It is unclear whether Gizmodo’s payment of $5,000 to the finder of this prototype constitutes improper means, as they were unable to get past the Apple screen, and had no idea whether the prototype was a hoax or modified iPhone 3GS. Apple has sent a letter to Gizmodo and has three years to bring trade secrets violation charges against Gizmodo or its parent site Gawker Media.
The full UTSA language can be found here.
By Eric Perrott