Source Code Review

Multi-million dollar settlement with the help of source code evidence in a technology lawsuit

The client of a leading international law firm based in New York was engaged in a lawsuit related to misappropriation of trade secrets and violation of a non-disclosure agreement against a virtual reality company. The law firm engaged iCuerious’s source code review specialists to bolster their arguments.

The main challenge lay in establishing what could be safely construed as a trade secret. Furthermore, on comparison of the various code versions from the plaintiff and the defendant, it became obvious that a cookie-cutter approach would not help in the case outcome as there was no significant overlap in the code functionalities. The technology was related to virtual reality hardware and since it was a fairly emerging area of research, our consultants grappled with a paucity of information on the web and other sources.

We realized that we needed to be creative and look at the problem from all possible dimensions. This broader perspective helped us in figuring out the areas where we could add value to the ongoing case. For example, we started looking at the email exchanges between the two parties and performed a targeted search in these documents to pinpoint technical information and ideas that were exchanged. We then performed a comparison of the different versions of the defendant’s code using specialized code review tools and looked for implementation in the code for those ideas that were exchanged via emails. This approach yielded encouraging results and we worked with the testifying expert to assist in the preparation of the expert witness report based on the supplemental evidence. We also brainstormed on other potential value additions and prepared a comprehensive report on the questions that could be asked at deposition and testimony to extract more incriminating evidence in the client’s favour.

Our client was really impressed with our technology expertise and ability to get up to speed and propose solutions quickly to the various challenges faced during the engagement. The evidence unearthed during the process played a key role in bolstering the trial lawyer’s arguments and the trial culminated in a multi-million dollar settlement for our client.