U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO)
Piracy, counterfeiting and the theft of intellectual property pose a serious threat to all U.S. businesses. Industry estimates of the cost of such theft range from $250 billion to 750,000 jobs per year. Small businesses often find themselves at a particular disadvantage because they often lack the resources and expertise available to larger corporations.
The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and the Natioanal Business Association (NBA) have partnered to help address this problem by participating in a nationwide program to encourage small businesses to recognize and consider the benefits of strong IP protection-both domestically and abroad. Specifically, the USPTO wants businesses to know:
- When to apply;
- What type of protection to apply for;
- Where to apply; and
- How to apply.
As part of the campaign, the USPTO has developed a Web site – www.StopFakes.Gov/SmallBusiness – specifically designed to help small businesses better identify and address their IP protection needs. Free informational materials, which can be downloaded from this Web site, will help guide small businesses through the often-complicated world of intellectual property protection. Finally, the USPTO is alerting small businesses to the resources being made available by placing announcements on Web sites they commonly turn to, such as entrepreneur.com and fast.com.
This program is part of a government-wide effort to curb IP crime and strengthen IP enforcement-both here at home and overseas. For example, the USPTO and other agencies within the Department of Commerce have joined with other government departments, such as the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Justice, in a government-wide Strategy Targeting Organized Piracy (STOP!) initiative, which aims to smash the criminal networks that traffic in fakes, stop trade in pirated and counterfeit goods at America’s borders, block bogus goods around the world and help small businesses secure and enforce their rights in overseas markets.
- Educational materials for small-business owners to help guide them through the process of protecting their businesses or inventions from intellectual property theft;
- USPTO conferences, seminars and workshop opportunities for small business owners, inventors, and entrepreneurs; and
- A new Web site, www.stopfakes.gov/smallbusiness, specifically tailored to the IP information needs of small business.
For information on Patents, Trademarks and Copyrights
For more information about the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, visit http://www.uspto.gov .
An Education campaign of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, U.S. Department of Commerce
600 Dulany Street