Technology companies face many external and internal threats. Hackers have shown a keen interest in exposing company secrets, by any means necessary. There is also the risk of having consumer-oriented products hacked by nefarious individuals, which can cripple any company’s reputation. Tesla, on the other hand, is trying a different approach to keep employee leaks in check. Starting this week, employees can no longer access the Blind chat app.
An Interesting Decision by Tesla
Given the current position Tesla finds itself in, keeping everything under tight wraps is in the company’s best interest. The competition among electric car manufacturers is heating up rapidly, thus no one can afford to have any information getting leaked. Ensuring all of these details are kept close to the company’s chest is a very difficult task, especially given how social media tends to make people loose-lipped with relative ease these days. As such, technology companies are often forced to take some invasive countermeasures.
A prime example of how extreme those measures can become can be seen with Tesla. While it is understandable the company wants to keep employee leaks to a minimum – if not non-existent – preventing employees from accessing specific applications seems rather harsh. It seems a lot of Tesla’s workers enjoy communication through an app known as Blind. It is an anonymous workplace chat app which is making quite a name for itself in the technology sector these days.
What makes Blind so appealing to workers all over the world is how they can discuss workplace topics in an anonymous manner. This is done either through private or public forums. Especially tech giant employees have taken a liking to this app, primarily to vent some of their frustrations. It is not easy to work in Silicon Valley, for example, and there is a lot of stress to contend with. Being able to vent every now and then can keep employees from suffering a burnout in the future.
It is believed over 2,000 Tesla employees use Blind in this day and age. That may seem like a very big number, which is also part of the reason why the company has taken a special interest in this trend. As of right now, Tesla employees can no longer sign up for the service, as the verification email is never delivered to the recipient. It also appears users can no longer access Blind through the company’s WiFi networks, further confirming Tesla is cracking down on this anonymous app.
A Blind spokesperson explains it as follows:
“We found out about this issue through emails from our users, saying they were unable to receive verification emails from us, and posts on the public channel, where already verified Tesla employees raised the issue. Then we looked into the verification rates and we could confirm that Tesla is preventing employees from accessing Blind.”
It is evident Tesla is very concerned about which information its employees may share with anonymous users. Although the company has never openly confirmed they are blocking Blind, it is evident something is going on behind the scenes. Whether or not the company will prevent access to other similar applications in the future, remains to be determined at this stage. It is not unlikely other Silicon Valley companies will follow a very similar path in the future to prevent employee leaks.