Intellectual Property (IP) Protection & Theft: Basics

For most companies/people intellectual property (patents, trade secrets) can actually be more valuable than its physical assets. So one has to take care to protect it.

To protect your intellectual property (IP), you need to make sure your ideas are protected from the day they are conceived. Trademarks and non-compete agreements are some of the popular legal methods available to avoid intellectual property theft.



And because almost all the information is stored on computers/networks nowadays, one should also take adequate care against IP theft tools. However, there are some challenges associated with remotely installing IP theft tools, such as:

  • It has to work without creating any suspicion in the minds of the victim; else it becomes difficult to install the program. That is why, most of these programs rely on using some form of disguise/trick to install.
  • If the programs are attached on an Email, there is a possibility that the User may not open it at all or it may go to the junk folder.
  • Most companies scan emails for attachments and messengers are blocked
  • If the program is on a USB drive, it may not help if the USB port is disabled on the target computer
    Physical access to the target computer may not be possible.

    Nonetheless its important that one takes all the necessary precautions to safeguard their computers & networks.

    Counter-Measures

    Here are some of the measures that can be taken to prevent IP Theft:

    • Implementing proper physical security measures to deny mobile phones in sensitive areas.
    • Urge all employees to use different levels of passwords like screen saver passwords, login passwords, document passwords so that nobody can capture information from their computer
    • Corporations should switch to switching networks
    • Never execute any file sent to you over email, chat, IRC
    • Be careful while downloading any shareware and freeware programs
    • Use encryption for data communication