Companies looking to protect their innovations in artificial intelligence and machine learning face a dilemma. Data and algorithms are essential components to developing products based on these technologies, but it is notoriously difficult to protect them from an intellectual property perspective. There are two possible approaches here. One is to apply for a patent. Another is to seek trade secret protection.
Instacart has filed a lawsuit against Uber's Cornershop service for allegedly stealing intellectual property. On July 16, the US grocery delivery service accused Cornershop of scraping Instacart resources to steal product images from the firm's catalog, "concealing this theft and passing off this work as their own." Instacart said the "brazen" theft included the "systematic" lifting of copyrighted product images, many of which were created in-house. See also: Uber to acquire Postmates delivery app in $2.65 billion deal Furthermore, the company claims that Cornershop attempted to disguise the theft by changing file names. To bolster its case, Instacart added that vacancies posted by Cornershop have asked for scraping and rate limit bypass experience, demonstrating the IP theft is a "strategic effort for the company."
NEW YORK - U.S. prosecutors on Thursday said a software engineer has been indicted on charges he stole trade secrets from the suburban Chicago locomotive manufacturer where he once worked and took them to China. Xudong Yao, also known as William Yao, faces nine criminal counts in the indictment, which was unsealed this week in the federal court in Chicago. Yao, 57, is still at large and believed to be in China, according to prosecutors. A lawyer for him could not immediately be identified. Yao's former employer was not identified.
While data may'want to be free' from a societal perspective, from a company perspective, private data, intellectual property and trade secrets are proprietary knowledge. Such knowledge, mated with domain expertise and smart execution, can be a competitive market advantage, which in a well-run, lean, continuously-improving operation, will ultimately provide market power. To protect data from leaking out, via both external and internal influences, a comprehensive, multi-layered security framework is always essential. And some of the first traces of security breaches, both physical and cyber, can be picked up in the minute signals hidden in the tea-leaves of operations. While IT (Information Technology) typically doesn't have the tools, budget or domain expertise to pick-up such signals across Operations, OT (Operations Technology) conversely has such knowledge but not the time or resources, as they're constantly focused on keeping operations up and running smoothly for the next hour, shift or day.
HOUSTON - A prominent cancer center in Houston has ousted three of five scientists whom federal authorities identified as being involved in Chinese efforts to steal American research. Peter Pisters, the president of MD Anderson Cancer Center, told the Houston Chronicle that the National Institutes of Health wrote to the cancer center last year detailing conflicts of interest and unreported foreign income by five faculty members, and gave it 30 days to respond. "As stewards of taxpayer dollars invested in biomedical research, we have an obligation to follow up," Pisters said. MD Anderson received $148 million in NIH grants last year. The center provided internal documents to the Chronicle regarding the cases but the names of the scientists were redacted.