If you are planning to work at Apple someday so that you can leak information about the company's latest products, you might want to rethink your career plans.
Apple is apparently very serious when it comes to leaks to media from internal sources. Last year, the company caught 29 employees who were leakers, with 12 of them arrested.
Apple Takes Leaks Seriously, Says Leaked Memo
Apple told its employees to stop leaking internal information on the company's future plans, claiming that legal action and criminal charges may be in the cards for those who do not heed the warning.
Ironically, the aggressive stance of Apple against leaked information was revealed through a leaked memo, which was posted on the company's internal blog and acquired by Bloomberg. According to the post, Apple caught 29 leakers last year, and 12 of them were arrested.
"These people not only lose their jobs, they can face extreme difficulty finding employment elsewhere," Apple cautioned. This makes sense, as tech companies will not trust employees who have been found guilty of leaking information.
In the internal blog post, Apple cited a couple of instances when internal information was leaked to the media. The first case was from a meeting earlier in the year where Craig Federighi, the software engineering head of Apple, told employees that some planned iOS features will be delayed. The second case involved a software package that revealed details about the upcoming iPhone X and new Apple Watch.
What's The Big Deal With Apple Leaks?
Some people may be wondering what the big deal is when information about new Apple hardware or software get leaked to the media. They will be released anyway, so why is Apple treating leaks so seriously?
In the internal blog post, Apple explained that leaked information about a future product may affect the sales of current models. The information may also give rival companies the chance to work on responses to Apple's plans. Leaks may also affect employee morale, as teams may suddenly see their efforts go to waste if the product or feature that they are working on was leaked well in advance of the official announcement.
The stance of Apple is not exclusive, however, as it is just part of the crackdown on leaks across tech companies in Silicon Valley. Like Apple, companies such as Facebook and Google tell their employees about their future plans, but fire people who are identified to have leaked internal information to the media.