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Toshiba Sues SK Hynix for Using Stolen Information

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Japan's Toshiba has brought a civil suit against South Korea's SK Hynix under Japan's Unfair Competition Prevention Act.

The lawsuit is seeking damages for what Toshiba claims was the wrongful acquisition and use of its proprietary technical information related to NAND flash memory, which Toshiba now jointly develops and produces with SanDisk.

Toshiba says that it filed the suit on learning that a former employee of SK Hynix has been arrested in Japan for alleged criminal infringement of the Unfair Competition Prevention Act. The employee formerly worked for SanDisk in a NAND flash memory development project conducted in partnership with Toshiba at Yokkaichi Operations, Toshiba's flash memory technology development and mass production base in Mie prefecture, Japan.

The employee is alleged to have taken Toshiba's proprietary technical information in 2008, and to have subsequently provided it to SK Hynix.

SK Hynix is a business partner of Toshiba. However, the companies are also competitors in NAND flash memory.

Moving forward, Toshiba said that it plans to construct a more robust system for protecting its intellectual property. Which can only mean more lawsuits.

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Tags: toshiba  sk hynix  Japan