UMC Fined $3.4M for Sharing Micron's Trade Secrets

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In 2017, Micron took United Microelectronics Corporation (UMC) and three of the company's employees to court, alleging that the workers and UMC had shared Micron's trade secrets with Chinese chipmaker Fujian Jinhua Integrated Circuit. According to a recent Bloomberg Law report, the lawsuit has finally concluded with Taiwan's Taichung District Court ruling in Micron's favor.

Before crossing over to UMC, which is based in Hsinchu, Taiwan, the three workers named in the lawsuit worked for Micron Memory Taiwan. In the lawsuit, Micron accused the former employees for stealing DRAM IP and giving the information to UMC. 

Stephen Chen, who once served as the president for Micron Memory Taiwan, was one of the accused. 

UMC denied the accusations and claimed that the its DRAM technology is in no way related or similar to Micron's IP. 

Three years later, the Taichung District Court has now decided against UMC, and the company will have to pay the consequences. The three former Micron employees have been sentenced to 4.5-6.5 years. In addition, they'll have to pay a fine of NT$4 million - NT$6 million ($134,830 - $202,245). 

UMC isn't getting off the hook easy either. The Taiwanese chipmaker has to shell out NT$100 million ($3.4 million) as part of the sanction.

Zhiye Liu
RAM Reviewer and News Editor

Zhiye Liu is a Freelance News Writer at Tom’s Hardware US. Although he loves everything that’s hardware, he has a soft spot for CPUs, GPUs, and RAM.