Bank of America claims ex-employees took confidential databases

Bank of America has claimed in a lawsuit that four ex-employees copied confidential databases of its trade secrets, and executed a “co-ordinated” attack on its wealth management unit using the data.

The password-protected database was taken by the employees, it said, as they left the company.

The ex-employees had "brazenly" announced they were taking the data, which included client names, addresses, emails and phone numbers, Bank of America said in papers filed last week at the New York Supreme Court.

The four accused now work at Dynasty Financial Partners, a wealth management and financial technology firm in New York. They left resignation letters saying they were allowed to take the information under a protocol agreed on by some banks, according to Bank of America. But the bank said it had not signed up for the protocol.

Dynasty is also one of the defendants in the case. The employees and Dynasty deny the accusations.

Bank of America said in its lawsuit that the databases provide “complete, comprehensive information” on clients and potential clients’ financial profile and investment preferences.

The judge in the case has temporarily barred Dynasty and the four individuals from using or sharing the database to solicit new clients, according to a Bloomberg report. But it did not bar the individuals from advising their existing clients.

Bank of America had not commented at the time of writing. A spokesperson at Dynasty Financial Partners said the team “rigorously followed” the protocol, which it said applied in this case.

“We are pleased that the judge denied Bank of America's request to prevent Dynasty from accepting account transfers from clients who want to continue to work” with the team, the spokesperson added

Hearings are now adjourned until January.


Copyright © 2010 IDG Communications, Inc.

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