An ex-employee of popular Russian search engine Yandex has been handed a two year suspended sentence for stealing and attempting to sell the service’s source code.
According to Russian paper Kommersant, Dmitry Korobov stole the code in order to fund his own startup, however was stopped before the transaction could take place after searching for buyers online (and offline).
The strangest part of the story however is the low price of the source code, as he only requested around $25,000 for the information.
If Korobov had been successful, Yandex’s service would have been greatly undermined by the code abound on the Internet, and it would have had serious consequences for the company. The Russian report says an anonymous source claims the theft had a potential impact of “billions of Rubles, which, in fact, represents a significant part of the value of ‘Yandex’, as the search engine – the main service of the company”.
Fortunately, Korobov was caught when we attempted to meet a possible buyer on the “darknet”, having attracted the attention of the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB).
Monitoring service LiveInternet says that Yandex has around 57 percent market share of search queries in Russia, with Google in second at 35 percent.