Software company accuses former employee of sharing trade secrets

By Jim Boyle | Sep 19, 2014

A software company that provides business development programming says that a former

highly placed executive has been disclosing confidential and trade secrets with her new company, a direct competitor for service contracts, according to a suit filed at the Montgomery County Court of Common Pleas.

Representatives from Amdocs say that former Customer Business Executive Jennifer Madeline has been in a position to disrupt their business practices by sharing confidential information with her new employer, NetCracker. The suit seeks injunctive relief that would prevent Madeline from working for either NetCracker or any other businesses that provide similar services and products for two years, plus a preliminary injunction to keep her from working for a competitor until a judgment has been made.

According to the suit, Madeline worked at Amdocs for more than 10 years, holding various positions, including solution manager, senior sales engineer and sales solution architect, giving her in-depth knowledge of the company's software, decision-making processes and strategies.

In March 2013, she was promoted to customer business executive, granting her even more access to confidential materials, including information on customers and potential customers, such as their preferences and needs, any vulnerabilities in Amdocs' software, marketing strategies, pricing of Amdocs' products and an inside look at the company's next generation software.

The claim says that Madeline attended management meetings where the same topics were discussed, including strategies to market to prospective clients. Having insight about Amdocs' confidential business practices would give a competitor an unfair advantage when courting customers, according to the complaint.

The plaintiffs claim that when Madeline voluntarily resigned on July 17, 2014, her manager asked where she was going to work. According to the complaint, Madeline declined to give an answer, only saying that it would be in a different industry.

According to the complaint, Madeline remained in the software service industry by accepting a similar job for similar compensation from NetCracker. Amdocs fears that Madeline has been put in a position to disclose their confidential business practices in order to give NetCracker an unfair edge. They also claim that Madeline is recruiting current Amdocs employees to join her and share more trade secrets with NetCracker.

The plaintiffs are represented by Susan Valinis of Reilly, Janiczek & McDevitt in Philadelphia.

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