Developer Accused of Leaking Trade Secrets to Mozilla

by Christopher Freeburn | April 30, 2013 11:23 am

HP WebOS[1]Norway’s Opera Software is accusing a former employee of divulging trade secrets[2] to Mozilla, the open source group that created the Firefox web browser.

According to Opera, which makes its own eponymous niche web browser, Trond Werner Hanson, a former lead designer who left the company for a year around i2007, broke his confidentiality agreement with the software developer by sharing concepts behind a lean web browser. Opera has sued Hanson in Norwegian court for about $3.4 million, TechWeekEurope notes.

Mozilla is not named in the litigation.

During his time away from Opera, Hanson concedes that he met with several companies, including Mozilla and Google (NASDAQ:GOOG[3]) to discuss his personal ideas for a streamlined browser. In 2008, he rejoined Opera as a consultant, but that he says he never transferred the browser ideas he was working on to the company.

In 2012, Hanson joined Mozilla after Opera did not renew his contract as a consultant. Opera sued after seeing a presentation from Hanson at a conference.

Earlier this month, Mozilla announced that it had partnered with South Korean electronics giant Samsung[4] to develop a new web browser capable of exploiting the power of multi-processor chips.

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  2. of divulging trade secrets:
  3. GOOG:
  4. had partnered with South Korean electronics giant Samsung:

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