Phony iPads, iPhones Put Apple Engineers' Trustworthiness to Test

One way Apple keeps details of anticipated products such as the iPad 3 or the iPhone 5 under wraps is reportedly by ensuring that its engineers are super trustworthy.

APPLE IPHONYS: The iPhone 5 edition

Such is the hypothesis according to both Adam Lashinsky's new book, Inside Apple, and the words of a former Apple employee who spoke during a Q&A session with Lashinsky during an interview orchestrated by LinkedIn (video below).

The exchange between the ex-employee and Lashinsky has been kicking around the blogosphere the past day or so, on such sites as Business Insider and Jim Romenesko.com. The ex-employee is difficult to hear, but apparently says in part: "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 9 months. It's intense."

Lashinsky said during the session: "People are hired into dummy positions where they are not really sure what it is they're doing. Even though you've been through this rigorous process they still don't know if you can be trusted."

It's that dedication to product secrecy that fuels the manic consumer response to new Apple offerings, as seen now in Hong Kong, where Apple has had to resort to a lottery system to stop scalpers from hogging up iPhone 4S smartphones.

Of course many suspect that while Apple outwardly disdains leaks, its grand scheme is to leak things, but on its own terms. Conspiracy theorists inevitably emerge every time an iPhone prototype gets lost in the field.

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