Former Samsung Exec Accused of Aiding Foxconn with Stolen Trade Secrets

At the beginning of July, there was news regarding the sensitive information that was leaked by a former employee of Samsung Electronics to South Korea. The allegation claimed that the former employee attempted to establish a chip factory in China using technology relevant to Samsung’s semiconductor chips. An unpublished 18-page indictment, which Reuters examined and released, states that Choi Jinseog is accused of stealing trade secrets and information from Samsung on the proposed Foxconn facility.

The indictment sheds light on Choi’s consultancy company, Jin Semiconductor, and its collection of sensitive information from Samsung’s suppliers while Choi vigorously disputes the allegations. A deal was signed between Choi’s Jin Semiconductor and Foxconn in 2018. After receiving the contract, Choi allegedly hired a large number of workers from Samsung illegally. Authorities stated that Choi illegally derived trade secrets from two workers who referred to themselves as chip fabrication and cleanroom management.

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A Samoo Architects & Engineers employee named Cho Young-sik is further accused of giving Jin Semiconductor private knowledge about the semiconductor cleanrooms. Providing access to blueprints and floor plans of Samsung’s chip facility in China to Choi’s business was done by a HanmiGlobal employee, Chung Chan-yup. Choi adamantly refutes the accusations made against him through his attorney Kim Pilsung. Kim contends that the information Choi obtained is open to the public and not something proprietary to Samsung. Kim also questions the value of the discovered manufacturing plan, pointing out the accessibility of satellite images from websites like Google Maps.

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From the prosecution side, it is said the stolen trade secrets caused a greater loss of more than $200 million to Samsung Electronics. The charges against Samsung emphasize the confidentiality safeguards the corporation uses to secure its private information by limiting access to authorized employees and partners. Choi, the 65 years old executive, spent nearly two decades as an employer for Samsung before helping to turn around rival SK Hynix. We can get more information about the alleged theft and its effects on the semiconductor industry’s environment when the trial draws nearer through the legal processes.

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