It’s bad enough when game companies are hacked by outside parties.
But hacking your own employees’ computers?
That’s a scenario that Activision CEO Bobby Kotick apparently endorsed in 2009, tasking the company’s IT director to access the computers and voice mail of Infinity Ward chiefs Jason West and Vince Zampella before the pair bolted for EA — to “dig up dirt” and “not get caught” doing it.
Former Activision IT Director Thomas Fenady believes the plans, which included staging a mock fire drill, were only discussed and never carried out — but it wasn’t for lack of trying. Lawyers for West and Zampella state that the scheme, codenamed Project Icebreaker, was rejected not only by the IT director, but by Microsoft and independent security firm InGuardians, due to the legal murkiness of the request.
Activision and EA have settled out of court, but West and Zampella’s separate case will go to trial on May 29.
Spying on your own employees? Maybe EA will have some competition for “Worst Company In America” voting next year.