If you're wondering what happens to people who leak trade secrets, they can't keep secrets for very long may make a little bit of money but eventually wind up getting caught, sentenced and may go to jail. In the past a worker in China who lost an iPhone prototype killed himself.
The guy (Brian Hogan) who found the iPhone prototype in the bar was prosecuted, fined and sentenced. Why is this information so important? Because stock market decisions depend on how well devices sell. If a trader knows sales figures before the public, he/she can buy low and sell high. A information-leaker in New York has pleaded guilty and may spend two years in jail for supplying trade secrets.
A former AT&T employee admitted to sharing 'insider" information to a hedge fund. Alnoor Ebrahim, admitted to providing insider information about AT&T sales of Apple's iPhone and Blackberry products and other handsets sold by AT&T. He pleaded guilty and entered into a plea bargain for a maximum of two years.
Working as an "expert consultant' he earned $180,000 from Primary Global Research LLC. Expert-network firms connect industry experts with hedge-fund managers and other professional traders for a fee.
He no longer works for AT&T as the director of channel marketing sales and operations for AT&T's wireless group. AT&T reported that his behavior was against the AT&T code of business conduct.
There are many bloggers out there who pay for leaked information. The people who work for carriers sign an agreement not to leak confidential information. Most of the information leakers who get caught lose their jobs.
I have been told by my contacts that if the carrier is able to trace the leaked information to the employee or the employee is almost instantly fired. Most often they can find the culprit.
Meanwhile if Ebrahim stays in jail for two years, his AT&T iPhone contract may be up and if he doesn't renew it, besides losing the case, he'll lose his unlimited data plan. He is probably hoping for an early termination without an ETF.