In an increasingly digital age, titans in every industry are fighting a constant battle to avoid data security breaches. As data thieves become savvier, their targets continue to evolve. In recent years, cybercriminals have begun to shift their focus from personal and financial data to intellectual property. While leaked client information can weaken the public’s trust in a company, stolen trade secrets or unprotected intellectual property can cause irreparable damage to the organization’s future.
According to a report released by the United States Trade Representative, intellectual property theft by foreign entities costs American businesses between $225 billion and $600 billion every year. With these thefts becoming more prevalent, business leadership should take precautions to protect intellectual property from falling into the wrong hands.
Protect your business against intellectual property theft
Proactive measures provide the best defense against data security breaches. Businesses should consider these attacks as significant threats to their continued success, not just temporary annoyances.
Undergo regular reviews of data infrastructure. Implement security software and monitoring procedures to identify potential threats as early as possible. Employ an internet security team to verify the efficacy of these measures.
Take threat notifications seriously. When security systems warn of potential attacks, take immediate precautions to prevent the breach from spreading. Take affected equipment offline and follow up with your internet security staff.
Be wary of internal threats. In an ideal world, a business can trust every one of its employees to the fullest extent. In reality, careless or malicious employees and contractors can create vulnerabilities in systems that house vital intellectual property. Take action to ensure that trade secrets and unreleased IP cannot be accessed by unauthorized personnel.
Promote awareness of threats in the workplace. Educate employees about best data security practices to protect intellectual property. Stay up to date on developments in internet security and propagate that information amongst the staff.
If your business suffers an IP breach, contact an attorney
Leaking intellectual property is as much theft as physical property crimes. If a breach has occurred, follow the Federal Trade Commission’s step-by-step guide for businesses to ensure proper procedure. Discuss the leak with an experienced intellectual property litigation attorney to learn more about how you can hold data thieves responsible for the potentially catastrophic theft of your business’s information.