Note: A previous version of this article mistakenly accredited the pending lawsuit to
Toronto, Ontario — Trouble is brewing in the world of diagnostics as Mitchell 1 and Snap-on launch a lawsuit against Autel.
The lawsuit, which has yet to be proven in court, alleges Autel stole information from Snap-on and Mitchell 1.
“Autel competes with Snap-on and Mitchell 1, and has its own handheld diagnostic computer tool…but it does not have access to anywhere near the same level of real-world repair information,” alleges the lawsuit, filed in a U.S. District Court in California.
Specifically, the lawsuit alleges that Autel circumvented security measures on Mitchell 1 and Snap-on diagnostic tools, to spoof these devices and download proprietary information.
Second, the lawsuit alleges that Autel acquired the login information of a different company “to surreptitiously and systematically pull Plaintiffs’ proprietary data from its online TruckSeries product,”
Third, the lawsuit claims Autel violated the terms of an end-user licensing agreement to improperly pull “large quantities” of proprietary information through Mitchell 1’s ProDemand product.
Mitchell 1 and Snap-on claim each has “taken countermeasures to stop this conduct, but Autel has morphed its behaviour in return and, undeterred, continues to try to steal…data.”
The lawsuit alleges violations of nine federal and state laws, including breach of contract, misappropriation of trade secrets, and circumvention of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act and the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act.
Michell 1 and Snap-on are seeking a jury trial and unspecified damages.
Autel has been served a temporary prohibition on accessing, directly or indirectly, Mitchell 1 and Snap-on’s devices or associated data servers or software, or from disclosing or making use of any data or information obtained through those company’s products.
Collision Repair reached out to the parties involved.
Autel has yet to file a response to the lawsuit and has until Sept. 12 to do so.
A spokesperson from Snap-On responded via email, “As a matter of policy, Snap-on does not comment on pending litigation.”
Mitchell 1 has yet to release a formal statement on the lawsuit.