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IPC Developing Best Industry Practices for Intellectual Property Protection — Seeks Industry Input

Mar 17, 2010

BANNOCKBURN, Ill., USA, March 16, 2010 — The IPC Intellectual Property Committee will release its first draft of a standard for the protection of intellectual property (IP) designed into printed circuit boards at an open meeting, Tuesday, April 6, 2010, at IPC APEX EXPO® in Las Vegas. The draft, "Best Industry Practices for Intellectual Property Protection", is intended to assist printed board manufacturers in the protection of IP for their customers in commercial, industrial and military/high reliability markets. Industry members from all segments of electronics manufacturing are invited to attend the meeting to review the draft standard and provide input.

Developed as a high-level roadmap to best industry practices for printed board manufacturers, the draft IP standard addresses issues such physical and information security, employee data access, computer networks, destruction of scrap material, and other important issues.

In addition to interest from leading OEMs, the security and integrity of printed circuit boards has been a recent topic of concern at the Department of Defense (DoD). Under direction from Congress, the DoD’s new executive agent for printed circuit boards will be developing a trusted source program for printed circuit board manufacturers supplying the DoD. Similarly, many leading OEMs in the commercial sector are auditing their supply chain to ensure protection of their IP.

Explaining the importance of the standard to potential customers, Raj Kumar, vice president & chief technology officer of DDi Corp said, “I believe that a robust IP protection program will help DDi set itself apart from the competition in this increasingly competitive global marketplace.”

Two recently released government reports emphasize growing government awareness of the importance of protecting the security of intellectual property embedded in the PCB. Although the body of the report was classified, the DoD publication, “Report on Trusted Defense Systems in Response to National Defense Authorization Act, Section 254,” recognizes the critical role of the domestic printed circuit board and the need to focus on the security of circuit boards in addition to integrated circuits. In addition, the U.S. Commerce Department study, “Defense Industry Base Assessment: Counterfeit Electronics,” identifies, along with both passive and active components, PCBs as key counterfeit parts.

With both the commercial and government sectors’ interest in protecting IP through supplier requirements and audits, the new standard is expected to educate members and elevate best practices in IP protection. The new IP standard will also help the global electronics industry save money by developing a single standard to which companies can certify.

The open meeting of the IPC Intellectual Property Committee will take place on Tuesday, April 6, 2010, 10:00 am–12:00 pm at IPC APEX EXPO, Mandalay Bay Convention Center, Las Vegas. Individuals wishing to attend the committee meeting must pre-register at http://www.ipcapexexpo.org/register for a free exhibits-only pass which will give them access to open standards development meetings as well as the exhibition and other free events.

About IPC

IPC (www.IPC.org) is a global trade association based in Bannockburn, Ill., dedicated to the competitive excellence and financial success of its 2,700 member companies which represent all facets of the electronics industry, including design, printed board manufacturing, electronics assembly and test. As a member-driven organization and leading source for industry standards, training, market research and public policy advocacy, IPC supports programs to meet the needs of an estimated $1.7 trillion global electronics industry. IPC maintains additional offices in Taos, N.M.; Arlington, Va.; Garden Grove, Calif.; Stockholm, Sweden; Moscow, Russia; and Shanghai and Shenzhen, China.

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