Insurance Coverage for Common Copyright and IP Risks

Companies should perform a thorough review of business practices and how they could give rise to intellectual property exposure, and also consult with their insurance broker on how to insure against risks.

By Evynne Grover | May 26, 2022 at 10:43 AM
Stock illustration: Thief stealing a lightbulb

Copyright violations and other forms of intellectual property (IP) risk have long been a major concern for publishers and entertainment companies, but the explosive growth of the Internet and social media, as well as the ease of producing content, have turned nearly every business into a publisher. Examples include:

  • The "widget" manufacturer that maintains a website with an online catalog and instructional videos for use of its product.
  • The cosmetics company that has Instagram and Tik Tok accounts where staff share influencer videos that are synced with music or have music incidentally in the background.
  • A restaurant chain that has a Facebook account showing photos of its food, as well as articles and reviews of its restaurants.
  • A nonprofit entity that posts activist videos and short-form films on its YouTube and Twitter accounts that are filmed in front of a graffiti-marked building.

Like companies in the media and entertainment industry, each of these businesses is, indeed, engaging in activities that risk violating the intellectual property rights of another party.

Here are five common activities that can expose companies to intellectual property risk:

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