A court filing from the ongoing legal case against Infinity Ward founders Jason West and Frank Zampella has shown that Acvtision's former IT director, Thomas Fenady, has testified that he was asked to hack into work email, computers and phones in order to 'dig dirt' on the pair, eight months before their contract was terminated.
The revelation comes from a court document supplied to Giant Bomb and claims to show that Activision was already in the process of looking to rid itself of West and Zampella during 2009, when tensions first arose.
"Dig up dirt on Jason and Vince...we just want to get rid of them."
Thomas Fenady's testimony on the instructions of George Rose
During that period, testifies Fenady, a plan was formed under the moniker of Project Icebreaker. Activision's George Rose, then chief legal officer and now chief public policy officer, asked him to find information which would give the publisher reason to dismiss the pair, by hacking email, computers and phones.
Fenady also testifies that he was told "don't get caught doing it", but that "Bobby will take care of you. Don't worry about repercussions."
Rose denies specifically asking Fenady to "dig up dirt" but admits to the existence of Project Icebreaker, telling the court that it was a plan to snoop on email company wide as a form of surveillance, rather than specifically to target West and Zampella.
Fenady approached third parties to try and accomplish his brief. However, both Microsoft and security specialists InGuardians refused to assist with the cracking of passwords without a proper court order. The possibility of faking a fire alarm or fumigation of the building in order to keep the pair away from computers long enough for them to be accessed or imaged was also discussed, says Fenady.
If the allegations are proven, it could give West and Zampella significant traction in their case against Activision, which goes to court on May 29.