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Ex-staffer: Apple assigns new workers to made up projects

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Get a job at Apple and there's a very good chance the company won't tell you what product or project you're working on, says author Adam Lashinksy. According to one ex-employee, Apple may even make up products in order to test your loyalty.

In Lashinksy's new book, Inside Apple - described by Apple fansite TUAW as "a quick, easy read... with large, readable type" - it is claimed that "new hires… aren't necessarily to be trusted with information as sensitive as their own mission".

New workers are hired into dummy positions while their loyalty is established, Lashinsky has said.

The book quotes a one-time Apple engineer who told Lashinsky: "They wouldn't tell me what [my task] was. I knew it was related to the iPod, but not what the job was."

And in a Q&A session with LinkedIn promoting the book, Lashinsky is told by a member of the audience, who claims to be a former Apple employee: "A friend of mine who's a senior engineer [at Apple], he works on - or did work on - fake products I'm sure for the first part of his career, and interviewed for nine months."

Apple's penchant for attempting to maintain secrecy at all costs is well known, and the company has always had a problem with details about future products, even minor upgrades, leaking out.

It's one reason why Apple has a downer on this very site - and a number of other publications we could mention, including the UK's - and the world's - first ever Mac magazine. ®

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