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ICG Risk Blog - [ What are they stealing now? Or do you just hand it to them? ]

What are they stealing now? Or do you just hand it to them?

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"You might as well sell this to us. We are going to get it anyway."

Not the best justification for sale but it is indicative of the size of the problem.

Commercial firms are at a disadvantage in that most are driven respectively by cost, cost, and cost while the skilled few are driven by cost, time, and risk (the latter two being other forms of cost). Only the very rare firms and the military look at risk, time, and cost.

How is a company to know what is valuable and to whom? Yes, all 18 of the MCTs (Military Critical Technologies) are consistently targeted but many commercial firms, if they think about it at all, think that it must apply to someone other than themselves.

It helps to see one’s products and services within the consistent themes that have emerged over the past six years:

  • Dual-use technologies
  • Components over complete systems
  • Unclassified technologies

‘Whoops, that could be me after all’ and indeed it is. Interest in dual-use items is self-explanatory -- they improve commercial and military areas equally. Components are less obvious but they face far less scrutiny to secure and are easier to integrate once obtained.

The "unclassified" category is vast; including both ITAR and EAR administered items. About 90 percent of all technology targeted by foreign assets in 2002-2003 was unclassified.

It is hard not to find your company in the "diverse assets of the energy, agriculture, automotive, machining, and environmental sectors."

Delving deeper, you may be providing standalone or embedded computer and chip technologies, semiconductors, biotechnology, biometrics, nanotech/miniaturization, pharmaceuticals, public security technologies, manufacturing processes, public safety systems, and patent rights.

Highest MCT categories are:

  • information systems (anything for C4IR - Command Control Communication Computer Intelligence Recognition)
  • Sensors and lasers
  • Armaments and energetic materials
  • Electronics

Later we'll deal with who is after you and how do they do it.

Gordon Housworth



InfoT Public  Infrastructure Defense Public  Intellectual Property Theft Public  Strategic Risk Public  

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