Russian national Alex Kibkalo, a former Microsoft employee in
Lebanon and Russia, admitted to Microsoft investigators that he
provided confidential company documents and information to the
blogger, documents from a Seattle federal court showed.
The blogger, who was not identified, was known to those in the
Microsoft blogging community for posting screenshots of pre-release
version of the Windows Operating System. The blogger hid his
identity stating falsely that he was from Quebec, according to the
An internal investigation by Microsoft revealed unauthorized
transmissions of proprietary and confidential trade secrets,
according to the court documents. An email from Kibkalo was found
within the blogger's Hotmail account, establishing that he shared
"We take protection of our intellectual property very seriously,
including cooperating with law-enforcement agencies who are
investigating potential criminal actions by our employees or
others," a Microsoft spokesman said in an emailed statement to
A lawyer representing Kibkalo could not be reached for comment
immediately outside regular U.S. business hours.
The court documents said during interviews, the blogger admitted to
posting information on Twitter and his websites and selling Windows
Server activation keys on eBay.
According to Microsoft's investigation, in July and August 2012,
Kibkalo uploaded proprietary software including pre-release software
updates of Windows 8 RT and ARM devices, as well as the Microsoft
Activation Server Software Development Kit (SDK) to a computer in
Washington and subsequently to his personal Windows Live SkyDrive
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Microsoft product teams use the SDK in customizing their product
code to ensure proper validation in the product key activation
Kibkalo, who worked with Microsoft for seven years, received a poor
performance review in 2012 and threatened to resign if the review
was not amended, the documents showed.
According to an FBI agent who was part of the investigation, Kibkalo
has relocated to Russia and based on a LinkedIn account, he is
currently working for another U.S.-based technology company with
offices in Moscow and St. Petersburg.
The case is in USA v. Kibkalo, Case No 2:14-mj-00114-MAT, U.S.
District Court for the Western District of Washington at Seattle.
(Reporting by Chris Peters in Bangalore;
editing by Gopakumar
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