Since the spring of this year, Tesla has faced legal trouble – or a whole series of them – More: A “foreign publication” reported that it had embezzled data from the company and its customers, as was first said in the company’s second-quarter financial report. The latest report also indicates that lawsuits have been filed in several US states. The company did not name the publication either time, but it was German newspaper Handelsblatt that reported on a massive data leak at Tesla in May – and has now revealed who was behind it.
Tesla whistleblower found with comparison
In its first batch of articles about the “Tesla Files” containing more than 100 gigabytes, Handelsblatt wrote that it had received data from an insider from November 2022. Later, more than one person was said to have demonstrated “how they could search for all Types of data, accessing and saving them in the IT system of the electric vehicle manufacturer.” It is said that information was not adequately protected, both business and personal, from employees and customers. In a report submitted to US authorities in August, Tesla wrote that two former employees had access to the data of more than 75,000 people and made it available to the newspaper.
Handelsblatt has kept the names of its informants secret, but a new report exposes one of them (but no mention of others), along with a long history of data leaks. He says Tesla insiders are announcing his name for the first time, which likely means the newspaper shouldn’t have revealed it beforehand. In any case, his former employer is now said to know who accessed large amounts of data without permission: Tesla compared the list of questions with the access protocols, thus identifying the whistleblower.
A former student in contact with Musk
According to the report, his name is Lukas Krupski, and he is from Poland, and he has been working at Tesla in Norway since the end of 2018. He initially described himself as a “pupil” of the company and its CEO, Musk. He is said to have shown a selfless commitment to the mission during his testing period when he prevented a major fire at a Model 3 display in Norway in March 2019 by tearing out components that were already burning from such an electric vehicle. The Tesla chief thanked him personally, Handelsblatt reported.
Krupski was pleased to have direct contact with the beloved CEO, especially since he asked the lowly employee if he had any suggestions for improvement. However, according to the report, he soon stopped listening to him, and when Krupsky asked Musk for help because his boss was trying to get rid of him, the Tesla boss responded that he could only take care of matters of critical importance. For the company it is.
According to the report, there was initially no termination, but Krupski was moved to the basement of the delivery department at Tesla’s Norway site, where he was mostly supposed to handle electronic issues on his own. He also received two warnings and is said to have collapsed in September 2020 due to nervous tension. By this time at the latest, he no longer felt like a disciple of Tesla and Musk: as Handelsblatt reported, he was then on long-term sick leave, contacted the company’s critics and began collecting data unnoticed in November 2021.
Tesla is said to have offered a deal
At the end of the year, he was fired. The Handelsblatt story continues. In November 2022, he submitted an initially anonymous report to the newspaper, to which he then provided a large amount of Tesla data. After it was published last May, authorities visited him early in the morning in June, searched his apartment in Norway and confiscated his electronic devices.
In its August US report, Tesla itself reported on the seizure of devices from two former employees who were charged – although Handelsblatt’s report now only mentions one. According to the company, the court has already banned the defendants from using the data again. According to Handelsblatt, Tesla until recently threatened Krupski with all legal means, but in mid-October he offered to waive all legal claims if he deleted the data. The former champion and disciple is said to have refused because he still had more grievances to reveal.
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