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Don’t mess with Goldman

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Poor Sergey Aleynikov.

The former Goldman Sachs programmer who allegedly stole some of the Wall Street firm’s top secret proprietary trading code picked the wrong firm to mess with–really. If Aleynikov had been an employee of UBS, he might only be facing a civil lawsuit right now–not federal criminal charges.

In March, nearly four months before Goldman ran to federal prosecutors with their concerns about Aleynikov, UBS was in New York State Supreme Court filing a civil lawsuit against three former employees, charging them with doing much the same thing the ex-Goldman employee did. The only difference is no criminal charges have been filed against the three former UBS employees.

The UBS lawsuit was first reported in June by Dealbreaker.com, after going unnoticed for several weeks. It’s getting more attention now in the wake of the Goldman case, which has begun to shed light on the importance of so-called high frequency trading strategies to Wall Street firms.

In the UBS lawsuit, which is still pending, UBS alleged that Jatin Suryawanashi, Partha Sarkar and Sanjay Girdhar took “source code for UBS’ trade secret algorithmic trading programs.” The Swiss-based investment bank further alleged the ex-employees intended to use the information in their new prop trading jobs at Jefferies & Company.

What’s the frequency, SEC?

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Sergey Aleynikov is not the Wall Street folk hero that some Goldman Sachs conspiracy theorists are making him out to be.

If Aleynikov stole some of the top secret code for Goldman’s automated, super-fast trading platform, as prosecutors contend, then he broke the law, and the 39-year-old former Goldman programmer should be appropriately punished.

Meet Jason, a former Sergey colleague

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Jason is one of the more than 100 programmers working on the secret sauce code that drives Goldman Sachs’ automated trading systems–also known as high-frequency trading.

How do I know? Well it says so here, on a Goldman promotional web page, where “real” employees for the firm talk about their jobs and their lives.

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