Losses from intellectual property espionage: a trillion dollars a year

NPR published a recent article called, “China’s Cyber Threat A High-Stakes Spy Game.” Here are some interesting points:

How to travel to China:

“I first of all get a loaner laptop. And the USB that I bring, I clean digitally before I bring it, so it’s totally blank,” Lieberthal says. Lieberthal then disconnects the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth functions, sets email filters and a virtual private network, or VPN. That’s all before the trip. While in China, he never lets his Blackberry leave his side, never uses a wireless Internet connection while he has his USB drive plugged in, and he also physically hides his fingers when typing passwords. When he gets home, everything gets digitally wiped and cleaned. Why take all this precaution? Espionage. More specifically, cyber-espionage.

The Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee Rep. Mike Rogers of Michigan, a former FBI agent:

“They are ferocious economic predators, and it is something we are going to have to deal with — and deal with it soon.  . . . Rogers has actually spoken with executives from some of the American businesses hit by cyberattacks, and he says stolen intellectual property from just one hi-tech company cost them billions of dollars in research and revenue as well as thousands of U.S. jobs. “Those are 10,000 jobs that would be in this economy, that would employ Americans, that are gone because of Chinese economic espionage,” he says.  New estimates put losses from intellectual property espionage at about a trillion dollars a year, Rogers says.

10,000 American jobs lost because of Chinese economic espionage.

Losses from intellectual property espionage are now at $1,000,000,000,000 EACH year. Example from just ONE company: Billions of dollars lost in research and revenue because of Chinese cyberattacks. How much is security worth? How about the price of a D*I*C*E security awareness briefing compared to billions of dollars lost?

Defense, intelligence, corporate intellectual property, and even furniture makers are at risk:

Chinese hackers have even broken into and stolen plans from American furniture manufacturers.”You can see the immediate economic benefit: You don’t have to pay for the design, you can build it cheaper, and you can offer the same product at a lower price,” he says. “That hurts our economy.”

Think about that the next time you buy a Made In China product at Walmart or Target. Yes, you get what you want at a cheap price, but in the end, what is the cost to the economic security of our country?

Threats are Out There