Waymo, a division of Alphabet, has filed a lawsuit against Uber for stealing some of their secrets in regards to their self-driving technology. The company alleges that former employees that are now at Otto (owned by Uber) and Uber themselves, downloaded designs and other self-driving car secrets, before leaving the company. In their Medium post today, Waymo says that Anthony Levandowski had downloaded over 14,000 proprietary design files that are for various hardware systems at Waymo, which included designs for their own circuit board and LiDAR – which Waymo now makes in-house. They also explained how Levandowski gained access to their design server – which wasn't easy. Waymo also says that other former employees had downloaded additionally highly confidential information pertaining to their LiDAR system, which included supplier lists, manufacturing details and much more.
In their blog post, they are claiming that Uber and Otto are using these secrets that were taken from Waymo, in their own self-driving car software and hardware. The company is now taking legal action against Uber. The company has many more details in their complaint, and that includes the unlawful misappropriation of trade secrets and patent infringement. The company says that they are "seeking an injunction to stop the misappropriation of our designs, return all trade secret information and cease infringing our patents." So they aren't looking to really take Uber to court, but they want competition to be fair between them, Uber and other self-driving car companies. They go onto note that Alphabet – Waymo's parent company – has worked with Uber in plenty of areas, so they didn't make this decision lightly, but knew it was a decision that had to be made.
We should be hearing more about this case between Waymo and Uber in the very near future. At this time, Uber has not made a statement about the allegations here, but that should change fairly soon. Especially once this case gains more publicity, by being out in the open. You can check out Waymo's full blog post, which details how they found out this information, by using the source link down below, it's a fairly interesting read.