Irony alert: Apple uncovered 29 "leakers" in the company last year and had 12 of them arrested, according to an internal memo leaked to Bloomberg. "Leakers do not simply lose their jobs at Apple," the memo reads. "In some cases, they face jail time and massive fines for network intrusion and theft of trade secrets both classified as federal crimes." Last month Apple fired an employee who leaked details "from an internal, confidential meeting about Apple’s software roadmap," the memo says, and last September an employee was caught for leaking the "gold master of iOS 11" to the media. Both times leakers said they doubted they'd be caught. "But people who leak—whether they’re Apple employees, contractors or suppliers—do get caught and they’re getting caught faster than ever."
Apple's crackdown is nothing new, however. Other Silicon Valley companies target leakers, and last year Apple gathered employees to warn about leaks—which was privately recorded and leaked to the media, notes TechCrunch. Such warnings could make Apple workers more afraid of whistleblowing, an analyst warns, while a fired Google employee's lawyer says the line is blurring between permitted conversations (about poor working conditions, say) and illegal leaks. But Apple says the real enemy may be the media: "People who work for Apple are often targeted by press," the memo reads. "While it may seem flattering to be approached, it’s important to remember that you’re getting played." Read the whole memo at Bloomberg. (Read more Apple stories.)