Watch: Ex-Apple Employee Claims Company Puts New Engineers on Fake Projects

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I knew Apple had a reputation for secrecy, but this is just crazy. Apparently the folks up at Cupertino are so paranoid about new employees leaking information that they put them to work on fake products until they can be trusted.

It’s all in Adam Lashinsky’s new book, Inside Apple: How America’s Most Admired — and Secretive — Company Really Works, and was confirmed by a man who claimed to be an ex-Apple engineer at a LinkedIn event.

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The engineer’s exact words: “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.”

What is this, the mafia? How exactly do Apple employees prove their loyalty? One imagines a sequestered room with an Android phone, a baseball bat and a grim supervisor watching from the shadows.

The lesson here is that you shouldn’t always trust Apple rumors, even if they come from somebody at Apple.

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