How to Protect Business Intellectual Property & Prevent Goldbricking Habits of Employees?

how to protect bussiness

Do you ever feel like your employees are not putting the required effort into their work? You have spent many dollars to build it up, but how can you secure your trade secrets and intellectual property from worker fraud?

Gold bricking, a term used for employees who want to do the least amount of work in their hours, still happens. According to research conducted in 2024, 89% of managers noticed the goldbricking patterns in their teams.

This article offers guidelines on protecting confidentiality and utilizing employee surveillance software to maintain efficiency. It requires some precautions, however, to take the most advantage of your employees and gain the objectives of the company.

Let’s briefly define the terms we discussed earlier, such as business intellectual property, cyberslacking, and goldbricking, and their impact on the Business.

What Is Business Intellectual Property?

It is the term that is used for a business intangible asset. It is a thing that does not exist physically, but it has value. You can say the business organizations may consist of designs, programs, concepts, inventions, trade secrets, names of brands, formulas, and art. (IP).

Intellectual property is protected through copyrights, trademarks, and plenty of other patent or legal measures. So, at the workplace, anyone of any dishonest employee is tempered with the (IP) secret data stored in cell phones, gadgets, and laptop and desktop computer devices alarming for enterprise business. However, large-scale business organizations usually protect themselves from corporate espionage.

Business organizations, most of the time, deal with the theft of business secrets or intellectual property, and most often, it happens due to insider threats. Additionally, black hate hackers created corporate chaos that every boss needs to know to the fullest and should protect their assets from potential cyber threats.

5 Best Practices to Protect a Company’s Intellectual Property

  • Torrens stated that, in the pre-written code of conduct, employees and vendors should sign a non-disclosure agreement at the time of recruitment.
  • Data stored within the company’s owned computer laptop and desktop devices should be monitored using computer monitoring software with proper consent.
  • Track the employee’s emails, and employers should know! How much is too much monitoring of employees’ emails?
  • Don’t allow your employees to use the company’s owned cell phones, gadgets, and desktop devices for personal reasons.
  • However, if any fishy activity has been monitored by the employees, then an immediate full–scale investigation should be conducted.

What is Goldbricking?

Organization, staff usually waste time using the internet on the company’s devices. They make additional pauses, look through social media, discuss with coworkers, or come up with some tactics for being unproductive.

Although everyone needs some downtime, goldbrickers overstay the limit. Their conduct may hurt team morale and cause a decline in productivity and, ultimately, the revenue of the organization.

However, most employees may claim that a particular extent of goldbricking or cyberslacking increases the productivity of the business organization because a little time in cyberslacking provides refreshment to the employees rather than continuous work, which becomes the factor of tiredness.

Further, employers have to take a few steps within working hours to reduce the goldbricking activities among employees and prevent a lack of productivity. The term Goldbricking was generated from a saying of the late 19th century, “selling anyone a gold brick means to swindle them.

Later on, with the passage of time, the term went viral among the general population. Moreover, Goldbricking has become more famous since 2013 when Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer banned telecommuting. The company’s remote employees were not used to logging into corporate work on a regular basis.

Five Practices to Eradicate Goldbricking, Cyber Slacking & Cyber Loafing

  • Employers should block websites on the employee’s company’s own computer devices.
  • Employers can monitor the employees’ instant messaging apps and websites within working hours.
  • Employers can record the hidden conversations of employees on cell phones and PCs.
  • Employers can monitor the screen of the company’s owned computer laptop and desktop device.
  • Employers should know how much is too much of employee monitoring.

Protect The Company's Intellectual Property & Monitor Goldbricking

You can protect your Business as well as the data stored on your cell phones and computer devices. Bosses can use various methods of monitoring, save the intellectual property of the Business, and keep an eye on their employees’ cyber-slacking activities by gathering information about employees’ activities.

Business entities can perform employee monitoring within working hours. The rising trends of employees spying in the workplace are worldwide and legal these days if they have the written consent of the employees. Apart from protecting the company’s owned confidential data, you can improve productivity and save corporate resources.

The main reason behind the monitoring of the workforce is to prevent unacceptable behavior in the first place and to curtail such behavior that can destroy the Business.

The methods of monitoring to protect (IP) & to track cyberloafing may include a number of methods. You can use the keystrokes logging method to spy on all the keystrokes applied by your employees on cell phones, tablets, and pads and on desktop computers.

Moreover, you can use live GPS tracking and internet monitoring to get to know the exact location of your employees and their browsing activities on the company’s equipment.

However, these days, employers are using methods and software that allow you to monitor web surfing, instant messengers, and email monitoring.

What Should Be Considered Before Deploying Employee Monitoring Techniques?

No matter what, if you want to protect business intellectual property and stop goldbricking activities. You have to consider a few things before using all the techniques and software to monitor your employees.

Employers can monitor workers using corporate-owned Windows and MAC computers, cell phones, and other devices during business hours. On the other hand, if the devices are owned by the employees, then you need to obtain proper written consent.  You cannot spy on the employee’s owned devices outside the working hours. Legality becomes murky when employers monitor staff using the company’s provided devices after working hours.

Therefore, if you want to track employees’ activities within working hours, then you should clear the terms of use of the company’s owned devices within working hours. However, employers should also consider a comprehensive acceptable use policy (AUP) on which staff should be agreed.

The Best Practices for Supervising Unproductive Employees

Firstly, keep an eye on your team and whether they are engaged in goldbricking, for example, too much socializing, long breaks, or web surfing. Employee monitoring software such as TheOneSpy can be used to monitor productivity metrics. Next, meet with the employee in person. Be specific about the counterproductive behaviors you noticed and lay out clear expectations for the future.

In addition, it could be beneficial to determine if the employee is bored or does not have the needed supplies. Delegating new responsibilities or additional training may also be necessary. If it does not change, take the next step and place the employee on a performance improvement plan. Tell them to point blankly state that their job is on the line if they don’t clean up their act.

In the end, you might need to fire goldbrickers. Although the decision is a very hard one, getting rid of an unproductive employee can be advantageous for the team and the company over time. The point is to keep goldbricking behavior under check and lead a culture where the employees feel motivated, challenged, and accountable for their work.

By having close monitoring, clear communication, and willingness to make decisions, you can minimize the effect of unproductive workers on your Business. The effort will be fruitful.

Monitoring Tool & Tips for Protecting Your Business from Goldbricking

As a business owner, your IP and trade secrets are some of your most important valuable assets. Conversely, some employees might try to rob data or spend time improperly on the job, which is called “goldbricking.” Recent surveys have shown that over 80% of companies were victims of IP robbery by employees.

One of the most effective methods to safeguard your IP and eliminate goldbricking is deploying employee monitoring software. Monitoring Software Employee monitoring tools like TheOneSpy allow you to see how your employees use devices and accounts. Tools such as keylogging, app usage monitoring, and GPS tracking record every user’s keys they type, websites they visit, and locations during their work hours.

If you happen to notice someone who should not have accessed files or wasting time, you can take instant action. Research shows firms that use monitoring software have an increase in productivity of up to 35%.

Set Clear Policies

Talk honestly to employees about how you are monitoring them and the reasons behind such monitoring. Explain that it is meant to safeguard IP and improve productivity, not invade their privacy.

Establish the rules for data access, internet usage, GPS tracking, and so on. Get employees to sign an agreement that they are aware of the policies and accept monitoring. This enhances openness and allows bypassing of legal problems.

Provide Employee Training

Educate the staff about data security best practices such as strong passwords, two-factor authentication, and how to identify phishing emails. Discuss internet policy, app download, and other things. With training, employees become active partners in IP protection, not only people to be monitored with caution. This number is as big as thirty-nine million dollars every year, which means that education is vital.

Employing a combination of monitoring tools, clear policies, and employee training is the best way to ensure the safety of your IP and avoid goldbricking. While some believe that it is invasive, monitoring done the right way can bring advantages both to employers and employees in that it can prevent theft and, therefore, increase productivity.

Incurring the expenses of avoiding data security exposure will be less costly than the risks and costs of non-protection.

Provide Employee Training

You might also like

For all the latest spying/monitoring news from the USA and Other countries, follow us on Twitter , like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.