A California Superior Court judge has granted Zynga a restraining order against Patmore. Zynga is suing former studio general manager Alan Patmore over alleged theft of trade secrets before he left and joined developer Kixeye.
According to Gamasutra’s Eric Caoili, documents filed with the Superior Court in San Francisco last Friday state that “Zynga alleges that in the days leading up to Patmore’s resignation, he had copied over seven hundred files that contained trade secrets and sensitive business data from his company-issued laptop to a Dropbox online storage account and attempted to cover his tracks by deleting the Dropbox program from his computer.”
According to Gamasutra’s Mike Rose – a condition within the restraining order, Patmore must contact the Dropbox company and request that the company preserve his account for Zynga’s forensics team so that they can access it.
The forensics team has also been granted access to Patmore’s personal computer and mobile devices.
The specific files were made up of metrics data, information on monetization plans, a final game design document for an unreleased Zynga game, over ten unreleased design documents, company revenue information, fourteen months of confidential emails and more.
Another condition in the restraining order, Patmore must return all of Zynga’s data that he currently has, and give up names of everyone he disclosed Zynga’s data to.
In Caoili’s article, he mentions that Zynga accuses Patmore of keeping files he saved as a part of joining Kixeye, and states that the stolen data “could be used to improve a competitor’s internal understanding and know-how of core game mechanics and monetization techniques, its execution, and ultimately its market standing to compete more effectively with Zynga.”
Patmore had worked at Zynga for sixteen months before leaving in August to join Kixeye as Product VP.