Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla, Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA), sent an email to all his employees late Sunday, noting a saboteur employee amongst its ranks. An upset Tesla Inc. employee, who was denied a promotion, manipulated code of the company’s manufacturing operating system under false usernames and exported highly confidential data to unknown third parties.
Tesla is investigating the matter in-depth to identify the extent of the damage and whether the worker was acting alone, with others within the company, or with other outside organizations.
With the company planning to ramp up production of their Model 3 cars to 5,000 per week by the end of June, Musk is worried as to how the leaked information could effect their progress from suspected opposition with vested interest which “include Wall Street short-sellers, who have already lost billions of dollars and stand to lose a lot more […] the oil & gas companies, the wealthiest industry in the world – they don’t love the idea of Tesla advancing the progress of solar power & electric cars […] then there are the multitude of big gas/diesel car company competitors,” Musk lists in his memo.
Last week, Musk announced he was shrinking Tesla’s workforce by 9% to gain more profitability, cutting over 3,000 workers. In a Monday email, Musk continued to warn workers to look out for anything suspicious, with a fire occurring that set back production for a few hours. At this point, Tesla cannot afford to continue manufacturing setbacks, with the company forecasting profits in the third and fourth quarters with shareholders based off the production of 5,000 Model 3 cars a week.
In the past, the company had to deal with possible infiltration. They sued former oil-services executive in 2016 in his attempt to impersonate Musk in an email to Tesla’s former CFO Jason Wheeler.