Intellectual capital and economic espionage: new crimes and new protections
Intellectual capital's (ICs) rising value in the production of wealth has been mirrored by its increasing vulnerability to crime. The factors such as the increase of economic espionage and cybercrime, the nature of IC as an asset, and the lack of legal remedies for the theft of IC have created a new environment in which IC is uniquely at risk from financial crime. This chapter explores these risks in greater detail in order to demonstrate that traditional legal remedies are largely ineffective to protect IC property rights and that given this policy environment and the nature of IC itself, prevention is the only reasonable means for protecting IC. The frequency and virulence of economic espionage attacks has increased markedly over the last ten years and will almost certainly continue to grow as the importance of IC grows and as criminals (both private and state-sponsored) increase in number and sophistication.