We found that six weeks before his resignation this former
employee, Anthony Levandowski, downloaded over 14,000 highly
confidential and proprietary design files for Waymo’s various
hardware systems, including designs of Waymo’s LiDAR and circuit
board. To gain access to Waymo’s design server, Mr. Levandowski
searched for and installed specialized software onto his
company-issued laptop. Once inside, he downloaded 9.7 GB of
Waymo’s highly confidential files and trade secrets, including
blueprints, design files and testing documentation. Then he
connected an external drive to the laptop. Mr. Levandowski then
wiped and reformatted the laptop in an attempt to erase forensic
fingerprints. Beyond Mr. Levandowki’s actions, we discovered that
other former Waymo employees, now at Otto and Uber, downloaded
additional highly confidential information pertaining to our
custom-built LiDAR including supplier lists, manufacturing details
and statements of work with highly technical information.
We believe these actions were part of a concerted plan to steal
Waymo’s trade secrets and intellectual property. Months before the
mass download of files, Mr. Levandowski told colleagues that he
had plans to “replicate” Waymo’s technology at a competitor.
A bad week for Uber just got a lot worse.