Theft of Intellectual Properties…

Michael D. Moberly

Business Intangible Asset Strategist & Risk Specialist

     The current U.S. administrations’ demand that particular Chinese consulate locations (in the U.S.) close as a consequence of allegations they and their personnel are central to efforts to ‘steal U.S. intellectual property’ (ala Covid-19 research) is an expedient response, but, certainly not an original perspective uttered only by this administration.

     My 25+ years of experiential research in matters related to distinguishing and safeguarding proprietary (business) information originating – embedded in (a.) university-based research, (b.) public-private entrepreneurial collaborations and/or startups, and (c.) corporate R&D…allegations as this, are more regular, especially since the passage of federal legislation in 1996, ala the EEA (Economic Espionage Act), i.e., 18 U.S. Code § 1831.

     Too, my assessment of similar circumstances, i.e., premature leakage (theft, misappropriation) of proprietary information, be it (a.) involving new (updated versions of an existing) product and/or service, or (b.) in this instance, a potential vaccine related to Covid-19…the probability that risk will materialize as attempts to misappropriate are likely to be influenced by who, how, when, and/or why, particular (information) assets/data are targeted, monitored, and the human and/or technological sophistication of such initiatives.

     To be sure, today, and for the foreseeable future, risk to business things intangible, is unrelenting, aggressive, and asymmetric Risk to business intangibles should always be recognized, factored, and correctly distinguished and mitigated…preferably, at the very earliest stage of asset competitive advantage and value development. Once business things intangible have been compromised, it is increasingly unlikely they can be retrieved, re-applied, or re-purposed, with their original value, competitive advantages, and revenue generation capabilities fully intact.

     Business – research leaders who find themselves influenced to (a.) be dismissive of these realities, and/or (b.) not objectively or comprehensively assess their risk probability, are effectively prejudicing their risk calculations (and outcomes) in which probabilities manifest as inevitabilities.

     The following = key and irreversible realities which all private sector, institutional, and government leadership are (fiduciarily) obliged to recognize…

  1. it is an irreversible economic fact that 80+% of most business’s – project’s value, sources of revenue generation, competitive advantage, reputation, and sustainability, lie in – emerge directly from the prudent development, exploitation, and safeguarding of business things intangible, i.e., various forms – contexts of intellectual, structural, and relationship capital = realities which will intensify and expand, not diminish, post pandemic.
  • all research, business development, and transaction environments are (a.) predatorially aggressive and competitive, (b.) monitored 24/7/365 by global economic and competitive advantage adversaries, and (c.) embedded with un-relenting and asymmetric risks which materialize at keystroke speeds.
  • the acquisition, development, infusion, and exploitation of proprietary business things intangible and intellectual properties, i.e., conventionally applied for and issued patents, trademarks, and copyrights

= things leadership may not know, they did not know.


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