On April 26, 2021, World Intellectual Property Day, the IPR Center in partnership with Michigan State University’s Center for Anti-Counterfeiting and Product Protection (A-CAPP), U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and the Better Business Bureau announced the launch of “IP Protect.” This joint initiative provides resources – free of charge – to aid small to medium-sized enterprises in protecting themselves against IP theft, fraud and cyber security awareness.
Intellectual Property (IP) Protect is a National Intellectual Property Rights Coordination Center (IPR Center) outreach initiative utilizing the resources and expertise of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) to bring together public and private sector partners to help small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) defend themselves from IP infringing crimes, fraud, and cyber intrusion. IP Protect’s goals are to R.I.S.E.
- Raise awareness about the scope of intellectual property theft and its detrimental effects.
- Identify and assist businesses vulnerable to IP loss.
- Support IP theft reporting, partnering with businesses to investigate and prosecute IP violations and deter future IP loss.
- Establish community-oriented partnerships to collaboratively prevent and respond to IP loss.
IP Protect Background
The IPR Center is led by HSI, the principal investigative arm of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. HSI is responsible for investigating transnational crime and threats, specifically those criminal organizations that exploit the global infrastructure through which international trade, travel, and finance move. One of HSI’s operational priorities is protecting intellectual property. The IPR Center spearheads the U.S. government’s response to investigating and preventing intellectual property rights violations, digital piracy, illicit trade, and customs fraud. The successful execution of the HSI and IPR Center missions relies on partnerships with the private sector, academic community, and across all levels of government.
While large businesses typically have personnel and departments dedicated to IP protection, SMEs may not have the resources to protect their IP, leaving them particularly vulnerable to IP loss. The IP Protect initiative seeks to help bridge that gap, collaborating with local government agencies, community organizations, and private sector companies to assist businesses and educate them on how HSI can support them in protecting their businesses from IP theft, fraud, cyber intrusions, and trade secret violations.
IP Protect: An outreach initiative supporting small and medium-sized enterprises. Watch the video to learn more.