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Apple is working on its self self-driving car project for a number of years now. Despite this, the company has managed to keep the secrecy of the details of the vehicle. But, now it has been reported that an employee has been accused of stealing the trade secrets of the project.
According to The Verge's report, the FBI (Federal Bureau of Investigation)is accusing an Apple employee of attempting to steal details about the project. The Chinese engineer Jizhong Chen was arrested and charged last week when he was scheduled to fly back to China.
This is not the first time when a Chinese citizen is been charged with stealing secrets from the Apple project. The first incident was happened in about six months back.
Apple said that if the confidential material got out, it would be "enormously damaging" for the company, the complaint said.
According to FBI, the engineer has also acknowledged that he has backed up his Apple work computer to a personal hard drive, which is against the company's policy.
Few employees have also noticed Chen taking pictures of the are in which the project was taking place. Apple's security team found "over two thousand files containing confidential and proprietary Apple material, including manuals schematics, and diagrams" including "hundreds" of images of his own laptop display, that showed sensitive company information.
It has been reported that the pictures where clicked as recently as December, and as old as for June 2018, few weeks after Chen was hired.
NBC Bay Area quoted company, that Chen was applying for a job at, "China-based autonomous vehicle company that is a direct competitor of Apple's project."
Chen is currently facing up to 10 years of prison with a maximum fine of $250,000 (approx Rs 1,64,00,000).