India’s IT giants are worried about moonlighting employees sharing their corporate secrets

India’s IT giants are worried about moonlighting employees sharing their corporate secrets
Representaional image.Canva
  • Moonlighting has become a huge issue in the IT industry.
  • Companies now fear that employees may work for their rivals and share corporate secrets.
  • Moonlighting has resulted in companies offering services to track moonlighting employees.
Moonlighting has become a huge issue in the IT industry, with several of the country’s top companies weighing in on it, offering different opinions. While a few companies have accepted it as the new normal, Rishad Premji, Wipro’s executive chairman, called it “plain and simple cheating.”

Companies have raised concerns about moonlighting, which involves one person working for more than one company. According to a Financial Times report, an increase in employees moonlighting has resulted in new companies popping up, offering “intermittent background checks” on employees to find out if they are moonlighting.

“It’s kind of top of mind right now for pretty much everyone here in India because the problem does exist, and it’s large,” said Ashok Hariharan, chief executive officer of IDfy, an identity verification company, in a statement to Financial Times.

Different stances on moonlighting

Moonlighting have become a hot issue, with Milind Lakkad, chief HR officer, TCS calling it an ethical issue. Infosys, on the other hand, has softened its stand on moonlighting after opposing it. The software giant has allowed its employees to take up gig work with the prior consent of their manager and BP-HR in their time and for companies that don’t compete with Infosys or its clients.

Companies offering background checks

With moonlighting becoming rampant, IT companies are worried about their employees working for their competitors.


“What the IT sector really cares about is if they’re working in competing companies. The risk significantly increases because your data can get out, your proprietary methodology can get out,” Hariharan added.

IDfy uses machine learning software to find moonlighting employees as part of its background checks. One of the methods the company uses to check for this is the provident fund database, in addition to social media, job websites, and other public records.

Companies have reportedly also used income tax filings to catch moonlighting employees. Companies reportedly check income tax filings and look if employees have any separate sources of income.


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