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

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Logitech Ultimate Ears Wonderboom Bluetooth Speaker

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

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

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?