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Why Offshoring Complicates IP Protection

by Larry Brock on Tuesday September 26, 2023

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Second in a Series from Former DuPont CISO on Trade Secret Protection for Manufacturers

The theft of intellectual property costs U.S. companies $300 billion annually by some estimates.

Guess what? Your valuable intellectual property is already under attack.

In manufacturing, trade secrets are the coin of the realm. As an industry, we pour billions into research and development to produce the IP that becomes new marketable products – 3.9 percent of net sales is reinvested in innovation – the highest of any industry. Overall sector investment in R&D drives economic growth around the world. According to the Brookings Institute: 90 percent of patents, 68 percent of private R&D spending and 11 percent of U.S. GDP can be directly attributed to manufacturing.

Yet there remains a barrier to further market expansion – and it’s a burden borne by information technology.

Offshoring has complicated the job of trade secret protection for IT security professionals. Manufacturers continue to outsource skilled labor, research and qualified engineers where they are both abundant and affordable. Overseas suppliers and contractors require application access and information transfer across borders and geographies. In a world of distributed IP, procedures to both inventory and safeguard trade secrets have become exponentially more complex.

Here’s betting your confidential IP is sitting on the laptops and mobile devices of your staff and trusted partners in foreign countries.

Are you sure it’s completely safe?

If not, you might want to download my e-book covering 5 tips that will help you realize some quick wins in your own efforts.

Read the full series:

  1. The Threats to Your Trade Secrets are Real
  2. Why Offshoring Complicates IP Protection
  3. Calculating the True Cost of IP Theft
  4. Make the Case for Investment in Ongoing IP Protection
  5. How to Form an IP Risk Committee
  6. 7 Elements of a Holistic IP Protection Plan
  7. Defining Intellectual Property
  8. Lock up your IP and Control Access to it
  9. Discover the Weaknesses in Your IP Security
  10. Improve Your Ability to Detect Cyber-Attacks


Tags:  IP Protection

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