Intellectual property theft and loss of trade secrets can cost millions of dollars in lost revenue, and can damage a company's competitive advantage.
Preventing intellectual property (IP) theft is critical. And when an incident occurs a quick and thoughtful response is crucial.
Inquesta works closely with clients and their legal counsel to manage and protect intellectual property, including customer data, trade secrets, trademarks and patents. We help safeguard IP against piracy, counterfeiting, gray market diversions and misappropriation by former employees, business associates and third parties.
Our IP loss and theft investigations identify the perpetrators, support litigation and bring the matters to resolution. Using our global network of investigators we conduct effective investigations across markets at different points in the supply chain.
Additionally, Inquesta is able to draw on its subject matter experts in computer forensics, security consulting and investigations to provide a unique, multi-disciplined approach to IP investigations and protection. We work with our clients to identify vulnerabilities and put in place appropriate measures before a loss occurs.
Case study: Investment House Competitor Steals Customer List and Financial Data
An international wealth management firm asked Inquesta to identify a continuing source of leaks about its clients and internal company operations. The firm’s reputation was being damaged by a series of false “revelations” in a local newspaper that insinuated misconduct by the firm, and the firm was losing customers.
Inquesta began the assignment by first securing the firm’s premises through electronic surveillance countermeasures (bug detection) to discover potential electronic surveillance devices, compromised communications switchboards, or compromised data storage devices (servers, photocopiers, etc.). Our discreet tests and inspections of the firm’s working spaces ruled out external technical penetrations as the source of the leaks. With that finding we focused on the firm’s existing personnel.
A covert investigation began with an analysis of company telephone call lists and reviews of personnel files and company activities. Intelligence research methods applied to the known information detected certain patterns and relationships between people and places that pointed to two existing employees: a company aircraft pilot and a chauffer. These two had made telephone calls and otherwise were linked to the local newspaper and, indirectly, to former managers of the client firm who had been forced out a year earlier.
The former managers had started a competing company and were working with the firm's employees to steal internal information and client names, and "leaking" distorted information to the newspaper to damage the firm's reputation.
INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY THEFT