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Computer Sciences Corp. v. Tata Consultancy Services Ltd.

United States District Court, N.D. Texas, Dallas Division

May 9, 2019

COMPUTER SCIENCES CORPORATION, Plaintiff,
v.
TATA CONSULTANCY SERVICES LIMITED, TATA AMERICA INTERNATIONAL CORPORATION, and DOE DEFENDANTS 1-10, Defendants.

          MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

          Sam A. Lindsay United States District Judge.

         Before the court are Plaintiff's Application for Temporary Restraining Order, Expedited Discovery, and Order to Show Cause for Preliminary Injunction (Doc. 6), filed April 22, 2019; Defendants' Opposition to Plaintiff's Application (Doc. 22), filed April 29, 2019; and Plaintiff's Reply (Doc. 26), filed May 1, 2019. After considering the application, supporting evidence, and applicable authority, the court denies Plaintiff's Application for Temporary Restraining Order and orders the parties to submit a proposed discovery and briefing schedule and suggested date for the preliminary injunction hearing.

         I. Factual and Procedural Background

         Plaintiff Computer Sciences Corporation (“Plaintiff” or “CSC”) is a provider of life insurance and annuities software systems and services. Pl.'s Appl., Doc. 7 at 7. CSC developed a proprietary software system, VANTAGE-ONE / Wealth Management Accelerator (“Vantage”), that performs calculations such as policy and fund valuations, rates of return, and cost of insurance calculations. Pl.'s Appl., Doc. 7 at 7-8. CSC contends that its software source code and associated user manuals, contain trade secrets and are marked as confidential and proprietary. Id.

         CSC licenses the Vantage software to customers pursuant to confidentiality and nondisclosure agreements that impose “strict limitations” on the use of the software. Id. The customer must limit who is able to access the source code, and CSC employees directly manage and support the customer's access to the software. Pl's Appl., Doc. 7 at 9.

         One of CSC's customers with access to Vantage source code is Money Services, Inc. (“MSI”). Id. MSI is a subsidiary of Transamerica. Id. Under the license agreement between MSI/Transamerica and CSC, MSI is authorized to share access to Vantage with third parties, provided that the third party is bound by confidentiality and nondisclosure provisions and does not use the software to benefit itself. Pl.'s Appl., Doc. 7 at 10. MSI/Transamerica provides such third-party access to one of its service providers, the defendants in this case, Tata Consultancy Services Limited, Tata America International Corporation, and Doe Defendants 1-10 (collectively, “Defendants” or “TCS”). Pl.'s Appl., Doc. 7 at 11.

         In January 2018, TCS announced that it reached a deal with Transamerica to adapt its software platform, BaNCS, to perform life insurance and annuities administration for TransAmerica. Pl.'s Appl., Doc. 7 at 6; Defs.' Resp., Doc. 22 at 8. Although Transamerica currently uses CSC's Vantage software to perform its operations, the deal with TCS anticipates the eventual transition of Transamerica from the Vantage software to TCS's BaNCS software. Def.'s Resp., Doc. 22 at 8. As a result of the deal, TCS now employs former MSI/Transamerica employees, some of whom have access to CSC's Vantage software pursuant to the license arrangement between CSC and MSI/Transamerica. Pl.'s Appl., Doc. 7 at 11.

         On March 25, 2019, Ashish Barnwal (“Barnwal”), a CSC employee who maintains an office at the MSI/Transamerica facility to oversee the use of Vantage software, was copied on an e-mail thread, the contents of which give rise to this lawsuit and a copy of which is attached as “Exhibit A” to Barnwal's Declaration. Pl.'s Appl., Doc. 7 at 13. The e-mails include a discussion among TCS and MSI/Transamerica employees regarding how the Vantage software program performs rate of return calculations. Pl.'s Appl., Doc. 7 at 11-13. CSC contends that these e-mails are evidence that TCS is misappropriating its trade secrets, namely, the Vantage source code and its accompanying user manual describing the calculation. Pl.'s Appl., Doc. 7 at 12-13. CSC alleges that TCS is misappropriating the Vantage source code and user manual to develop its competing BaNCS software system, pursuant to its deal with TransAmerica. Pl.'s Appl., Doc. 7 at 10, 17.

         Upon discovering the existence of these e-mails from its employee Barnwal, CSC filed this action on April 22, 2019, alleging claims against Defendants for trade secret misappropriation under the Defend Trade Secrets Act (“DTSA”) and Texas Uniform Trade Secrets Act (“TUTSA”), unfair competition, conspiracy, tortious interference with prospective economic advantage, and conversion. By separate application, CSC filed the Motion for Temporary Restraining Order, Expedited Discovery, and Order to Show Cause for Preliminary Injunction. Specifically, CSC requests that the court issue a temporary restraining order that enjoins Defendants from:

i. Acquisition, disclosure, or use of CSC's software, source code, software documentation, or any part thereof, and CSC's confidential and proprietary processes, methods, techniques, and compilations (collectively, “CSC Information”) in connection with the development or use of Defendants' own products (including BaNCS);
ii. Acquisition, disclosure, or use of CSC Information except as authorized by CSC and necessary to provide TCS' contractually-obligated services to MSI;
iii. To the extent that Defendants assert that acquisition, use or disclosure of CSC Information is authorized and necessary to provide TCS' contractually-obligated services to MSI, Defendants shall identify to CSC: (1) the specific CSC Information that has been or will be acquired, disclosed, or used; (2) the specific contractually-obligated service that necessitates such acquisition, disclosure or use; (3) the reason such acquisition, disclosure, or use is necessary; (4) the name(s) of the MSI employee(s) and business unit who authorized the work; and (5) the name(s) of Defendants' employee(s) who need to acquire, disclose or use the CSC information, and for how long, within three days of this order.

Pl.'s Appl., Doc. 7 at 14 (emphasis added).

         II. ...


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