Tesla sues 2 former employees for data breach

Workers' names, home and email addresses affected, says company

Tesla sues 2 former employees for data breach

Tesla has filed lawsuits against two former employees for their involvement in a data breach at the company.

Recently, the company informed current and former employees of the incident as well as the actions it has taken in response.

“We are writing to tell you about a data incident that involved your information,” the company said in a notice posted on the website of the Office of the Maine Attorney General. “While we have not identified evidence of misuse of the data in a manner that may cause harm to you, we are nonetheless providing you with this notice to ensure that you are aware of what happened and the measures we have taken.”

On May 10, 2023, a foreign media outlet named Handelsblatt informed the automotive company that it had obtained Tesla confidential information, according to the notice.

Certain employee-related records were among the confidential information that were affected as part of this incident. These include workers’ names, as well as such as addresses, phone numbers and/or email addresses.

Investigation leads to allegations of data breach

Following an investigation, Tesla found that two former employees misappropriated the information and shared it with the media outlet, in violation of Tesla’s IT security and data protection policies.

Tesla filed lawsuits against the two former employees which resulted to the seizure of the former employees’ electronic devices that were believed to have contained the Tesla information.

The company also obtained court orders that prohibit the former employees from further use, access, or dissemination of the data, subject to criminal penalties. 

It has also cooperated with law enforcement and external forensics experts and will continue to take appropriate steps as necessary, it said.

“Tesla is committed to the protection of the data it handles and will continue to confirm its safeguards and implement appropriate measures, as well as ensure employees are trained on responsible data handling practices,” said the company.

Previously, more than 8 million Cash App Investing customers may have had personal data compromised after a former employee downloaded internal reports without permission, parent company Block Inc. revealed in a regulatory filing.

Using data analytics to combat breach

The Tesla breach “fuels a call for proactive measures,” said Datacy, the “data advocacy” blog, via LinkedIn.

“Learning from past breaches and employing data analytics can predict potential threats, ensuring timely intervention.

“Data analytics steps in as a powerful guardian in such situations. By examining patterns and behaviors, analytics can spot irregularities that signify potential threats.”

As companies rush to maximize the potential of generative artificial intelligence (AI) for business success, they may be overlooking one key player in the decision-making process: the chief data officer (CDO), finds an IBM report.

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