Tesla is currently handling one of its biggest data crises. The company was hit by a massive data breach a couple of months ago, where miscreants had access to some of the most vital and personal information of over 75,000 current and former employees.
The American EV giant, led by Elon Musk, has begun informing current and former employees affected by the data breach in May, impacting 75,735 individuals.
An inside job
In a notice published on the US-based Maine Attorney General’s website, Tesla revealed that an investigation uncovered that “two former Tesla employees misappropriated the information in violation of Tesla’s IT security and data protection policies.”
The company swiftly responded by containing the breach, assessing its extent, and safeguarding the compromised information. Tesla pursued legal action against the two ex-employees, confiscating their electronic devices suspected of having stolen data.
Furthermore, Tesla obtained court orders to prevent the former employees from further utilizing, accessing, or distributing the data under threat of criminal consequences.
An attempt to whistleblow?
Reportedly, these former employees shared sensitive information with the German newspaper Handelsblatt. However, the newspaper assured Tesla that it would neither publish nor misuse the data due to legal restrictions.
The breach encompassed certain personal data of specific current and former employees, including names and contact details such as addresses, phone numbers, and email addresses that Tesla typically holds as part of its role as an employer.
It is possibly connected to the autopilot scandal.
Although Tesla uncovered no personal data misuse, it offered those affected complimentary access to Experian IdentityWorks, a service that monitors credit and guards against identity theft.
Meanwhile, it has been reported that Tesla’s engineers admitted not addressing issues with the Autopilot system following a fatal 2016 accident in the US that claimed a driver’s life. This revelation emerged during testimonies in 2021 for a lawsuit regarding a similar fatal collision involving a Tesla in 2019, which is currently heading for trial in the US.