Hurd putting HP secrets in peril, lawsuit claims

HP: Hurd's new role as president of Oracle "has put HP’s most valuable trade secrets and confidential information in peril"

HP has sued its former CEO Mark Hurd, claiming his new position as president of Oracle "has put HP's most valuable trade secrets and confidential information in peril."

"Despite being paid millions of dollars in cash, stock and stock options in exchange for Hurd's agreements to protect HP's trade secrets and confidential information during his employment and following his departure from his positions at HP as Chairman of the Board, Chief Executive Officer, and President, HP is informed and believes and thereon alleges that Hurd has put HP's most valuable trade secrets and confidential information in peril," HP alleges in a complaint filed this afternoon in Superior Court for Santa Clara, California.

In Hurd's new position as president and a member of the board at a major competitor of HP's, the company claims "Hurd will be in a situation in which he cannot perform his duties for Oracle without necessarily using and disclosing HP's trade secrets and confidential information to others."

Hurd left HP in early August after the conclusion of a probe into claims that he sexually harassed an HP contractor who was a former softcore porn star. The internal investigation found that Hurd had not violated HP's sexual harassment policy, but he did violate HP's standards of business conduct.

This week Oracle brought Hurd aboard to replace Charles Phillips whose departure has been rumored since he made some public miscues of his own. Oracle has denied that Phillips is leaving.

Part of Hurd's new job at Oracle will be to raise awareness of its Exadata systems which, ironically, were launched on HP hardware but moved to Sun Microsystems boxes after that company was acquired by Oracle. In a press release announcing Hurd's appointment, he mentions Oracle beating IBM, but makes no mention of HP. "As Hurd well knows, IBM and HP are competitors in the enterprise storage business," the complaint observes.

"Hurd's clear effort to avoid mentioning HP is telling in light of Oracle's own SEC filing identifying HP as a competitor," it continued. "What Hurd and everyone else knows is that the Exadata server mentioned in his quote is a direct competitive product to HP's Proliant Server."

The action against Hurd is for breach of contract and the threatened misappropriation of trade secrets. It is asking the court, among other things, to temporarily block Hurd from taking his new position with Oracle and award HP damages, attorneys' fees and court costs.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags HPOraclebusiness issueslegalpersonnelTech industryCivil lawsuitslegal issues

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

John P. Mello Jr.

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Brand Post

Bitdefender 2018

With determination and drive, you achieve outstanding performance! Get Bitdefender Total Security 2018 Now!

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?