The pharmaceutical industry is facing a number of challenges during the current economic downturn which create a strong requirement for the pro-active protection of company information and assets.
Long standing issues surrounding data exclusivity and patents are ongoing debates within the industry and are increasingly important issues in the face of rising R&D costs. The need to be first to market to secure sizable profit margins has led to a highly competitive global industry. For a sector so rich in IP it is imperative that the threat of corporate espionage is considered seriously.
Espionage Considerations for the Pharmaceutical Sector
The lengthy and costly process of clinical trials, ongoing innovative productivity challenges and fierce legal patent disputes are becoming commonplace. The need to protect sensitive corporate information against corrupt or improper activity has never been more important.
Our extensive experience in providing strategic board level support to global corporations has helped many of our pharmaceutical clients to realise the value of having peace of mind in outsourcing their business resilience planning to Esoteric. Our clients are able to concentrate on core business activity, safe in the knowledge that the threat of attempted or actual attacks from competitors, criminals and terrorists has been minimised.
Esoteric Ltd can deliver a range of services that will help in reassuring our pharmaceutical clients that their integrity of their information and conversations has not been and cannot be compromised. These include:
- Technical Surveillance Countermeasures (TSCM) / Bug sweeping
Prior to meetings, boardrooms, conference rooms and offices can be swept using the very latest, specialist search equipment and finger-tip physical searches, ensuring that environments are free from eavesdropping devices and hidden cameras.
- In Place Monitoring Systems (IPMS), 24 hr Countermeasures
Real-time, permanent countermeasure sensors offer round-the-clock protection from eavesdropping. Often described as a burglar alarms for conversations, IPMSs can be installed into meeting rooms, board rooms and offices and will alert if an illicit device is detected.
- Live Monitoring
For the most sensitive of conversations, Live TSCM monitoring can be provided for the duration of meetings, events and conferences. Skilled TSCM engineers, would provide continuous live monitoring to detect whether any new devices have been introduced, or if something is transmitting that could compromise a meeting.
- Espionage Awareness & Threat Briefings
Tailored to suit each client’s requirement, briefings will provide attendees with an understanding of the current threat from modern day espionage. Briefings will address the risks to the individual/organisation from espionage; how espionage is conducted and by whom; and will provide practical mitigation techniques.
- Physical Penetration Testing
Assess the effectiveness of your physical security processes and controls across the business estate with periodic, independent Physical Penetration Testing. Using covert techniques, authorised attacks on buildings and offices are conducted to penetrate the physical security systems and identify vulnerabilities.
Pharmaceutical Giant Targeted with Bugged Corporate Gift
A global pharmaceutical company regularly ensured that they are securing their Intellectual Property, by undertaking regular electronic and physical TSCM surveys at a number of their offices. As part of this proactive approach Esoteric Ltd were requested to conduct a survey of one of their premises in Western Europe.
During the course of the survey the Esoteric team identified a wooden pencil box, which had been presented to the company as a gift. The box would typically have been used as a presentation / letter opening set and was being used as a desk ornament by a senior manager within the company. Within the construction of the box, a sophisticated audio device was identified. The device could be switched on / off remotely for long periods of time and transmitted a considerable distance. Whilst no recording device was contained within the unit, the device was sophisticated it would have posed a considerable threat to the company’s information and business activities.
The device was subsequently removed from the premises and as the item was a gift, the company were aware who was targeting them for business information and have since undertaken additional counter-surveillance measures to protect their information and assets including:
- Increased program of TSCM sweeps of executive offices and key meeting rooms
- Espionage Awareness Briefings for Senior Staff/Key Executives
- Counter espionage roadshows to raise awareness amongst the organisation’s wider staff population
The best way an organisation can protect its proprietary information is by educating themselves and their employees about what their organisation holds valuable. With heightened espionage awareness throughout the whole organisation, this pharmaceutical giant achieved greater confidence that appropriate measures were now place to allow them to carry on Business As Usual, secure in the knowledge that their confidential information would remain confidential.