The Theft of Business Innovation: an ACM-BCS Roundtable on Threats to Global Competitiveness


Creeger, M. (2010). The theft of business innovation: An ACM-BCS roundtable on threats to global competitiveness. Communications of the ACM, 53(12), 48-55.


Valuable information assets stretch more broadly than just bank accounts, financial-services transactions, or secret, patentable inventions. In many cases, everything that defines a successful business model resides on one or more directly or indirectly Internet-connected personal computers (e-mail, spreadsheets, word-processing documents, etc.), in corporate databases, in software that implements business practices, or collectively on thousands of TCP/IP-enabled realtime plant controllers. While not the traditional high-powered information repositories one normally thinks of as attractive intellectual property targets, these systems do represent a complete knowledge set of a business’ operations. Criminals, who have come to understand that these information assets have very real value, have set up mechanisms to steal and resell them, bringing great financial harm to their original owners.

Read more from SRI