How to protect intellectual property

Intellectual property is a key element of a successful business. It is the reliable security of information that determines the competitive advantages that ensure a presence in various markets.
A trade secret is a much more valuable product than a company’s “physical” assets. And it does not matter in which form it is expressed: customer bases, patents or new developments of leading employees. All sorts of “dark forces” are trying to get close to this treasure: representatives of competitors, hackers and insiders.

Intellectual property protection is a set of measures and technologies that involve both specialized departments, such as lawyers, security and IT departments, and every employee of the enterprise. After all, any employee, in one way or another, is personally responsible for the proper treatment of the intellectual property entrusted to him.

Before starting protecting trade secrets, it’s a good idea to clearly understand which information is most valuable to your business. There are 4 basic categories of intellectual property.

The first category is patents. They allow to monopolize legally the production of certain goods or the use of specific technologies. Those who wishing to use the patented products will have to purchase such an opportunity from the copyright holder company.

The second one is trademarks. They include names, phrases, sounds, and symbols that are directly related to the company or its products.

The third is copyright, which protects written or artistic works recorded on a tangible medium.

The fourth group is the most interesting for business, because it includes trade secrets. These can include anything: a chemical formula, a drawing, a device, a set of data or processes or plans to launch new lines or products. Even ideas for entering new markets. Any leaks of such information lead not only to immediate financial damage, lost profits and prolonged unplanned expenses, but also to court cases. And this is an extremely slippery path to an unknown future. After all, to compensate for the damage caused, the business will have to prove that the secret is actually a secret, it adds value to the company, and most importantly-measures were taken to protect it.

To secure your valuable data, it is necessary to follow a few simple steps.

1. Determine what in your company falls into the category of “intellectual property”: the theft of which information will lead to immediate financial damage and loss of market positions. Heads of departments who are daily faced with various aspects of business activity can help in this matter.

2. Take control of copying equipment — printers, copiers, scanners, fax machines. Firstly, modern devices are able to store in memory all the documents that they process. And, secondly, most of the information leaks initiated by an insider occur in the form of printed documents. After all, the average company rarely uses software that allows you to accurately determine which documents are printed. According to foreign experts in the field of information security, data protection systems with the option of printer control are the first line of defense against malicious actions of the “mole”.

3. Moving information within a local network, displaying documents in the “cloud” or copying them to a flash drive is one of the priority areas of control. The head needs to know what employees copy and what third-party services they use. This will help to develop a security policy, properly configure and protect resources, and identify data leaks. Ideally, a traffic monitoring system should not only track all information movements, but also be able to detect suspicious activity and deviations from the norm that signal the actions of insiders.

4. Staff communications. The use of work mail for personal purposes, personal accounts in social networks and messengers on the work computer are potential security holes. And it’s not just the malicious intent of particularly enterprising employees. Banal sending of important documents “to the wrong chat” can cost the company profit and reputation.

The “Mirobase” software package has all the characteristics that Western analysts define as the most important. Test the program and you will see its intellectual property protection capabilities from personal experience.

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