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7/22/2009
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Apple Confirms Death Of Man In Missing iPhone Incident

The suicide of a Chinese man came after he was interrogated about a missing iPhone prototype by Apple supplier Foxconn.

Apple has confirmed the death of an employee of iPhone manufacturer Foxconn who committed suicide in China after he was interrogated about a missing prototype of a new version of the smartphone.

Sun Danyong jumped from the window of his 12th-floor apartment last week after he was interrogated by Taiwan-based Foxconn's security department, several Chinese publications, including the Shanghai Daily, reported.

Sun was detained and questioned after one of 16 fourth-generation iPhone prototypes he was responsible for was found to be missing. Sun, who denied taking the iPhone, claimed he was beaten by Foxconn security, according to media reports.

In a statement sent to reporters, an Apple spokesman said, "We are saddened by the tragic loss of this young employee and we are awaiting results of the investigations into his death. We require that our suppliers treat all workers with dignity and respect."

A published translation of a Foxconn statement quoted the company as expressing "deep sorrow and regret" for Sun's death.

The statement went on to say that the company was reviewing management for "deficiencies" and the security division involved in the Sun case had been suspended without pay.

Sun, 25, a native of Yunnan Province in China, was an engineering graduate hired by Foxconn in 2008. The company was accused in 2006 of poor working conditions in its Chinese factories. According to the China Business News, the company had Shenzhen factory employees work more than 12 hours a day for only about 1,000 yuan a month, Shanghai Daily reported. Foxconn sued China Business News, but later dropped the suit.

Apple demands secrecy on the part of its product manufacturers, requiring them to sign contracts that impose hefty penalties if they are found to have leaked sensitive information, The Wall Street Journal reported.


InformationWeek Analytics has published an independent analysis on data-loss prevention. Download the report here (registration required).

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