Tesla settles with ex-engineer accused of stealing Autopilot source code

Tesla settles with ex-engineer accused of stealing Autopilot source code


Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

Tesla and former Tesla engineer Cao Guangzhi have come to a settlement after the electric car company accused Cao of stealing the Autopilot source code. Cao, an engineer focused on autonomous driving, told Reuters that the source code has never been used since he parted ways with Tesla.

In 2019 Tesla sued Cao after the engineer left Tesla to work at its rival, the Chinese carmaker XMotors. Tesla accused Cao of stealing trade secrets — specifically the source code for its Autopilot driver-assistance software. In the initial filing, Tesla referred to it as the “crown jewel of Tesla’s intellectual property portfolio.” While Tesla and its fans often liken it to autonomous driving, it’s really more a sophisticated form of cruise control and…

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