Several former AT&T employees and web-based company Swift Unlocks are being sued by cellphone mogul AT&T, according to Tech Times. The lawsuit alleges that three former sales representatives in Washington state helped unlock thousands of cellphones so that customers could use the phones outside of the AT&T contracts they were designed for.
According to the lawsuit, the ex-employees made anywhere between $10,000 and $20,000 from Swift Unlocks before AT&T was made aware. The employees and Swift Unlocks apparently unlocked “a significant number of devices in only milliseconds, prompting the company to launch an investigation.”
Android Police writes that the scheme “involved some employees using their access to internal systems to install malware that gave Swift Unlocks the ability to generate the codes for customers that had not yet finished their contracts.”
Android Police also makes mention of one of the employees trying to recruit a coworker, “promising $2,000 every two weeks for simply clicking a malicious link that would do the rest of the dirty work.”
Tech Times goes on to say that if the defendants are found to be responsible, each of them will be expected to compensate AT&T for its lost profits in restitution, in addition to the proceeds they earned from the scheme. There is also a possibility that, if the allegations are substantiated, those responsible may be arrested on suspicion of committing criminal fraud.
Swift Unlocks is a Anaheim, California, based company that charges modest fees for unlocking cellphones, making the devices available to be used on any cellphone carrier. This process is not against the law if the cellphones were not attached to a contract. However, if contract was still being paid off, as the lawsuit alleges, AT&T may have a case.
AT&T issued a statement assuring the public that the scheme did not put any private customer information at risk.