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eBay, PayPal sue Google, claim Google Wallet is stolen

updated 10:30 pm EDT, Thu May 26, 2011

eBay and PayPal sue Google over trade secrets

eBay and its payment wing PayPal immediately followed up the launch of Google Wallet by suing Google and two executives for allegedly stealing trade secrets to help create the mobile payment technology. The online auction house accused Google's Wallet project lead Osama Bedier of feeding confidential PayPal information to Google to help it create the NFC mobile payment system and of making former eBay executive Stephanie Tilenius break a contract by having her join Google as its VP of commerce in February 2010, a month before she finished a consulting contract with eBay that had followed her exit from full-time work. Bedier also supposedly tried to poach PayPal employees while he was at Google.

The Santa Clara-based legal complaint directly accused Google of betraying a deal. PayPal and Google had been on the verge of completing a deal that would have offered PayPal as a payment option in Android Market. Bedier had been negotiating that deal but was abruptly poached before it could go through, sabotaging the deal and potentially giving Google a wealth of technical knowledge to help Google Wallet, including "major retailers."

"At the very point when the companies were negotiating and finalizing the Android-PayPal deal, Bedier was interviewing for a job at Google -- without informing PayPal of this conflicting position," eBay and PayPal said.

The Wallet system has elements not unlike what PayPal uses. Along with credit card information, a user's virtual cards include the Google Prepaid Card, essentially a virtual account that users can load with money much like with PayPal. By telling retailers how to process payments with that card using APIs (app programming interfaces) and other protocols, Bedier would have not just relayed PayPal's methods to Google but to anyone who wanted to use the Wallet system.

Google hadn't responded to the accusations as of Thursday night. If the claims are found accurate, however, they could jeopardize the existence of Google Wallet itself by portraying the service as tantamount to theft.

Stephanie Tilenius and Osama Bedier at the Google Wallet introduction

by MacNN Staff



  1. DeepDish

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Do No Evil

    Do no evil?

  1. joecab

    Joined: Dec 1969


    maybe I'm just paranoid...

    ... but I do believe we're a little sue-crazy here in the U.S. when it comes to patents and innovations.

    No, no, I'm sure it's just my imagination.

  1. chris2519

    Joined: Dec 1969


    ebay as a victim? please.

    eBay is one of the most morally bankrupt corporations out there -- double dipping and overcharging its customers in every way possible. First of all, they tried to "steal" paypal THEMSELVES before buying them outright -- by copying their business model (and I'd guess a trade secret or two) to create their ill-fated "Billpoint", and when that didn't work, they went and bought out PayPal and made it into one of their equally corrupt subsidiaries. The way they have treated sellers and small business owners over the years is so predatory (you pay not once, but three times: first with a listing fee, then with a commission, and then with Paypal's fee. And they have made it almost impossible to NOT accept paypal, so like it or not, you are paying this company THREE different fees every time you sell something.) I know it's wrong of me to think this way, but I sort of hope that Google DID steal from them -- and that they get away with it.

  1. chas_m



    This one

    I think Google could actually lose.

  1. Bobfozz

    Joined: Dec 1969


    As Bad as PayPal May Be...

    and I am no fan of theirs... that does not give Google the right to be BAD too!

    If Google did this, and it seems so because their attitude is to steal first and settle later since they have so much money--I hope they get their clock cleaned.

  1. chris2519

    Joined: Dec 1969



    okay, i admit my grudge against ebay gave way to a rather nonsensical argument on my part. google may very well deserve to get their hand slapped. i just find ebay/paypal to be such a rotten company.

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