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Five Easy Steps to Success in Online Brand Protection

Five Easy Steps to Success in Online Brand Protection

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Published by Rob Holmes
As the owner of a valuable brand you must first realize that, right out of the gate, you have two problems and you need to create a plan to manage both. Problem number one is that, the more profitable your Intellectual Property becomes, the more profitable it will be to counterfeit. Your second problem is that there are dozens of lawyers, investigators and technology companies chomping at the bit to line their pockets as a result of your misfortune. The truth of the matter is that you are the victim of a crime and you must assemble the proper team in order to be effective and efficient at your job of protecting your brand. Your goal is to curtail the volume of crime to a level that is controllable to minimize the exposure that counterfeiters have to their potential customers. The most important role in this team is a decisive and informed project manager inside your company who can supervise this strategy properly. In my more than two decades of experience with tens of thousands of cases under my belt I have only seen one system work. This is geared toward, but not limited to, industries such as luxury brands, consumer goods, apparel, video gaming, software, music and film.
As the owner of a valuable brand you must first realize that, right out of the gate, you have two problems and you need to create a plan to manage both. Problem number one is that, the more profitable your Intellectual Property becomes, the more profitable it will be to counterfeit. Your second problem is that there are dozens of lawyers, investigators and technology companies chomping at the bit to line their pockets as a result of your misfortune. The truth of the matter is that you are the victim of a crime and you must assemble the proper team in order to be effective and efficient at your job of protecting your brand. Your goal is to curtail the volume of crime to a level that is controllable to minimize the exposure that counterfeiters have to their potential customers. The most important role in this team is a decisive and informed project manager inside your company who can supervise this strategy properly. In my more than two decades of experience with tens of thousands of cases under my belt I have only seen one system work. This is geared toward, but not limited to, industries such as luxury brands, consumer goods, apparel, video gaming, software, music and film.

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Published by: Rob Holmes on Feb 17, 2012
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02/27/2012

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Five Easy Steps to Success in Online Brand Protection™

As the owner of a valuable brand you must first realize that, right out of the gate, you have two problems and you need to create a plan to manage both. Problem number one is that, the more profitable your Intellectual Property becomes, the more profitable it will be to counterfeit. Your second problem is that there are dozens of lawyers, investigators and technology companies chomping at the bit to line their pockets as a result of your misfortune. The truth of the matter is that you are the victim of a crime and you must assemble the proper team in order to be effective and efficient at your job of protecting your brand. Your goal is to curtail the volume of crime to a level that is controllable to minimize the exposure that counterfeiters have to their potential customers. The most important role in this team is a decisive and informed project manager inside your company who can supervise this strategy properly. In my more than two decades of experience with tens of thousands of cases under my belt I have only seen one system work. This is geared toward, but not limited to, industries such as luxury brands, consumer goods, apparel, video gaming, software, music and film. REVELATION: In order to protect anything a group must be on the front lines watching for threats which become leads they record and organize. Those leads are then filtered into the preset categories Notification, Investigation and Escalation so that the appropriate action can be assigned to each lead. It is most recommended that this process be handled by an outside specialist such as a monitoring company, a law firm or a detective agency. NOTIFICATION: For those who appear to be first-time offenders, it is best to warn them, their ISP, registrar and payment processor. This is also a time for those who are not inclined to commit repeat crimes to respond and/or mend their ways. The recommended process for this job is for a law firm or the monitoring company to send these notices electronically. Once the subject has been notified, all of their “found data” should be databased. INVESTIGATION: These repeat offenders have already been put on notice and continued offending with new knowledge and more sophisticated methods. Those methods include better ways to detect their detectors coming. For this group of offenders you must immediately acquire and preserve as much data as possible. This means an undercover purchase should be made immediately and a ‘first responder’ team sent in to the Virtual Crime Scene™ to obtain the evidence required for later action. If not, most of this evidence will later be gone. Once the infringing goods are procured and deemed illegal, the subject must now be notified in person. The most effective way to do this is via the “knock ‘n’ talk” where a local investigator waits for the subject to come home then knocks on his/her door and speaks with them faceto-face in a civil and persuasive fashion to make sure the individual knows their further actions will lead to escalation. It is important that much thought is put into implementing this step. You should have a primary investigative firm designated to supervise these cases. ESCALATION: These career criminals have continued to offend after being put on notice twice, once in writing and once in person. You must now determine if civil or criminal action is most effective and efficient. Some folks will only respond to the fear of jail. These individuals should be arrested using your investigator with local law enforcement contacts. Restitution is sometimes awarded in criminal cases and should be pursued. If it appears that the subject may have assets that can be recovered it is recommended that you pursue a civil action with your outside counsel. This can be in the form of a draft complaint with the request for a settlement or a lawsuit can be filed. CELEBRATION: Once this system has been implemented and used over a period you will find it easier to maintain. From a corporate standpoint, your performance figures are easy to quantify. This will lead to less shrinkage, more savings and a healthier company.

© This document, as well as the method and steps within it, are all the exclusive intellectual property of IPCybercrime.com LLC. All rights reserved. For more information please visit www.ipcybercrime.com or contact Rob Holmes at rob@ipcybercrime.com.

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