This week, your internship assignment takes you to the Corporate Security office, headed by the Chief Security Officer (CSO). This office has recently completed an investigation into how a competitor may have obtained copies of the confidential architectural drawings and design plans for a new type of resort that the company had planned for a recently acquired island property. At least one competitor is known to have received copies of the company’s intellectual property through an economic development office within its country’s government. It is suspected that an Advanced Persistent Threat mechanism may have been used to exfiltrate information from Padgette-Beale’s existing hotel property within that geo-political jurisdiction. Another competitor, also operating in that geographic area, contacted Padgette-Beale’s Corporate Security Office and disclosed that it had been sent URLs for web pages containing links to the resort plans by an unknown party. The other firm wanted to make it clear to Padgett-Beale that they did not condone nor participate in such illegal and unethical taking or receiving of another company’s intellectual property.
As part of the company’s response to this theft, the CSO’s office has been asked to prepare a background briefing for company’s executives that addresses the problem of protecting intellectual property stored in digital form. The briefing must include recommendations for best practices that the company’s executives should be adopting to prevent / respond to such thefts.
Begin by reading the readings for this week. Then find additional information through your own research.
Write a 2 page summary of your research and analysis for review by the CSO’s senior staff. Your summary should begin by explaining the problem of intellectual property theft. Next, address the reasonable and customary processes and procedures which should be used to discourage or make it difficult for employees, managers, and executives to inadvertently misuse and/or steal the company’s intellectual property (at a minimum, you must address data classification and marking, separation of duties, and least privilege). You should also identify and explain five or more best practices which the company should implement as it responds to this growing problem.
Remember to list and cite your sources at the end of your research summary using a professional and consistent citation format (APA recommended)
Protecting Intellectual Assets
Protecting Intellectual Assets
Corporate organizations are exposed to threats and risks on their intellectual properties, and thus there is a need to adopt the best practices, approaches, and solutions to protect them. Corporate organizations stand to lose both financially and socially when their assets, such as intellectual properties land on the wrong hands or third parties. The firm, in this case, through investigations from the Corporate Security office, noted that confidential architectural drawings and design plans of a new resort hand landed in the hands of competitors. The loss and exposure of assets and other intellectual properties of the firm stand at risk, and, thus Padgett Beale needs to take appropriate measures towards protecting all the interest in the interest of the firm. Padgett Beale needs to adopt the best practices and recommendations for the executives to prevent the unethical and illegal transfer of the company’s intellectual property.
The company needs to create and implement an intellectual property rights protection program to guide the executives in their different operations. The protection of intellectual properties that include trade secrets, copyrights, patents, and the property is vital to the competitive advantage of an organization (Schotter and Teagarden, 2014). The program creates awareness of the organization’s intellectual assets as well as assigning different roles to different employees regarding protecting the intellectual property. The program provides policies that guide and control the operations of the executives in the interest of protecting the organizational intellectual property.
Employee training, procedures, and policies need to be incorporated in the organizational operations to guide the executives and other employees in safeguarding and protecting the corporate intellectual assets (Schotter and Teagarden, 2014). The policies are adopted to assist in protecting external communication policy, information classification policy new invention notification policy, new confidential information notification policy, computer usage policy, and lab and engineering notebooks policy. The different policies need to be combined and streamlined to ensure they work to complete each other. The harmonization of policies ensures that the executives and the employees adopt a work and operation culture that ensures that intellectual assets are safeguarded.
Classification of organizational assets goes far in ensuring that sensitive assets and information such as intellectual property are protected from landing on the wrong hands. The assets and documents are classified based on their sensitivity and confidentiality (Frank et al., 2010). The most sensitive documents and assets are safeguarded and are only accessed appropriate parties such as the executives. On the other hand, the less sensitive documents and assets are moderately regulated for the employees and executives. The assets and documents classification approach ensures that the intellectual assets are on safe hands and are protected from third parties.
On the other hand, an intellectual property attack that has already happened needs to be handled in the most appropriate way to prevent further damages. First, the organization needs to stop the breach by containing it to ensure that the attack is effectively eliminated (Frank et al., 2010). The damage needs to be assessed to establish the extent of the attack and report the same to the affected parties to take them to take the relevant or recommended best practices. Additionally, the affected organization needs to conduct a security audit to determine the damage caused, vulnerability, and loopholes that exists at the expense of the intellectual property.
Some different best practices and recommendations need to be adopted to ensure that an organization’s intellectual property is protected. In the case of a successful attack, the necessary steps are used to effectively handle the situation. The best practices to protect intellectual assets include adopting an intellectual rights property program, classification of assets and documents, using appropriate policies, procedures, and training to effectively handle intellectual assets. The combination of different best practices ensures that the executives appropriately guided on handling intellectual assets, thus protecting them.
Frank, S. M., Beckham, C. T., Arena, C. M., Evans, S. J., McLendon, M. L., Short, S. M., … & Sherwood, A. L. (2010). U.S. Patent No. 7,774,207. Washington, DC: U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.
Schotter, A., & Teagarden, M. (2014). Protecting intellectual property in China. MIT Sloan Management Review, 55(4), 41.