Is source code theft still a problem?
Dec 01, 2010

In the world of SaaS and Cloud Computing, Is source code relevant? Is it still getting stolen?

The answer is YES!

With companies moving to a flexible workforce (work-from-home, off-shore team, partners, etc.), stealing source code is as easy as emailing it to yourself or to your friends’ private email address, copying and pasting it onto a USB thumb drive/ MP3 Music Player, or posting onto the cloud/website to retrieve later. The capabilities to steal source code have been simplified with the ongoing advances in technology.

Has the technology advances made is easier to stop source code theft?

The answer is mixed: Yes, in cases where workers interact with the source code under the IP owners companies IT control. There are technologies and solutions like DRM (Digital Rights Management), IPS (Intrusion Prevention Systems) and IDS (Intrusion Detection System that monitor networks and systems for activities that violate the company’s policies. This does prevent the leaks as long as there is an IT staff member monitoring all the alarms and acting upon them on a timely basis. But there is still the risk of not seeing a real alarm in a sea of “False Negatives”.

In cases of remote and at home workers, these DRM, IPS and IDS don’t work as well. The system is connected via a local ISP or partners remote network allowing the worker the ability to copy-cut-paste the source code from the corporate network to a local file, email or thumb drive.

So how can you prevent loss or souvenir taking at all times?  The answer is using a product like Chaperon Secure™ Development Environment which isolates and encapsulates the source code and tools used to create or interact with it. The source code is not accessible outside the secure environment (system and operating environment), allowing the workers to securely interact with the source, to create, de-bug, compile, etc., without being able to keep souvenirs of it.

Learn more by visiting our website or contact us today.

Posted By Ashif Dhanani |


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