On Wednesday, May 22, 2013 the Commission on the Theft of American Intellectual Property released a report making several policy, legislative and legal recommendations with the aim of reducing the “scale and scope of IP theft.” The Commission noted that to reduce such theft the United States must change the “incentive structure for IP thieves” by altering the “conditions that encourage foreign companies to steal American intellectual property.” It highlighted that “current law and law-enforcement procedures simply have not kept pace with the technology of hacking and the speed of the Internet,” which has created an unsustainable situation where nearly “all the advantages are on the side of the hacker.” The Commission recognized that the current “bias against ‘offensive cyber’ in the law” is based in part on the valid concern that actions against hackers to recover stolen information could “degrade or damage the computer or network systems of an innocent third party.” Because of that tension, the Commission ultimately recommended that “[w]ithout damaging the intruder’s own network, companies that experience cyber theft ought to be able to retrieve their electronic files or prevent the exploitation of their stolen information.”

The Commission is co-chaired by Dennis C. Blair, former Director of National Intelligence and Commander in Chief of the U.S. Pacific Command and Jon M. Huntsman, Jr., former United States Ambassador to China, Governor of Utah and Deputy U.S. Trade Representative. The entire Commission report can be found at: http://www.ipcommission.org/report/IP_Commission_Report_052213.pdf