Jawbone is suing Fitbit over alleged employee poaching and data theft, The New York Times is reporting.
The UP3 wearable maker claims Fitbit has been "systematically plundering" proprietary data by hiring Fitbit employees who allegedly stole confidential information prior to leaving their jobs at Jawbone. The complaint, filed in California State Court, also says Fitbit stole trade secrets and intellectual property.
If Jawbone was to be believed, Fitbit has been engaging in this practice since the start of the year. Reportedly, Fitbit recruiters have reached out to nearly a third of Jawbone's workers, some of whom may have took Jawbone data, such as product information and business plans, on their way out the door.
The complaint, according to the NYT, includes details of actions by two employees who admit to taking confidential data from Jawbone, as well as confession from Fitbit's top human resources manager saying that her company was indeed poaching workers. Jawbone wants Fitbit to stop with this practice and pay for the damages related to the alleged stolen data.
Fitbit is, obviously, denying any wrongdoing, and has released the following statement:
As the pioneer and leader in the connected health and fitness market, Fitbit has no need to take information from Jawbone or any other company. Since Fitbit's start in 2007, our employees have developed and delivered innovative product offerings to empower our customers to lead healthier, more active lives. We are unaware of any confidential or proprietary information of Jawbone in our possession and we intend to vigorously defend against these allegations.
Fitbit has recently filed for a $100 million IPO.