If you are outsourcing for the first time, you likely have the concern that your outsourced developer will steal your proprietary code. This is a very legitimate concern, because your company is spending good money to build a unique product and you don’t want someone else to steal it. Additionally, you have likely heard horror stories and urban legends of someone having a brilliant startup idea stolen and exploited.
Our experience has shown that the likelihood of a SourceBold overseas-based developer stealing your code is near zero. In fact, we would argue that you are less at risk of having someone overseas steal your code or your start up business idea than you are with having a developer in the US steal your code or reverse engineer your product after it’s gone to market.
The following are 7 reasons why we will guarantee you that your SourceBold developer won’t steal your proprietary code:
1) We are a US-based outsourcing firm
Most outsourcing firms are based overseas and many of these are in countries that don’t have intellectual property laws. SourceBold is based in Utah. We take your intellectual property very seriously and we work with you as a partner to protect your IP and your code. Firms located overseas can’t give you this same legal protection. And it is even more impossible to protect your IP when you are outsourcing on a freelance site with a developer you have no ties to.
2) We help you put protections on any sensitive software
We will work with you to identify any source code that is strong intellectual property, such as complex algorithms that are the core of your product. Once we have identified any of these, we can help you to put in place a source control (if you don’t already have one) to limit access to this specific code to only your current US-based developers, while giving access to a limited subset of your software to your overseas developers.
3) We screen and background check our developers
We do a thorough screening of all of our developers. This screening can include background checks and references with past employers. We only hire developers with strong references from past employers and completely clean backgrounds. If we turn up any history of problems that are a concern, we won’t hire the developer.
4) Our developers sign NDAs
All of our developer sign NDAs. These NDAs are enforceable in the U and also held up in nearly all developed countries in the world. In the unlikely worst case scenario that a developer stole code, they wouldn’t be able to distribute it to any developed country where an NDA is enforced, which eliminates virtually every country where they could make monetary gain from it.
5) Our developers don’t want to ruin their careers or reputations
Our overseas developers are hard working, honest individuals with years of experience. Most of them have worked with US-based companies their entire careers. They have worked hard to build reputations with a US-based network and don’t want to harm this. The majority of them have families they support and wouldn’t jeopardize current or future employment, any more than a US-based developer.
6) Our developers don’t have the resources to start a business that competes with your idea
We work with a lot of startups which are concerned that their developer will steal their code and/or their idea. However, to create a successful software-based startup, the development of the software is only a small percentage of the equation. The time and effort involved in marketing, distributing, designing and selling a product is more costly than most overseas developer could ever afford to do.
Additionally, even if they did succeed in getting a business off the ground, they wouldn’t be able to sell their product to any major markets because your SourceBold NDA protects your code (See #4).
7) The market to purchase stolen software is nearly non-existent
There is little to zero market for purchasing stolen software, with the exception of already established multi-billion dollar software projects created by companies like Microsoft or Oracle. Regardless of whether a developer is based in the US or overseas, in order to sell your software this developer would have to track down a potential buyer, which means you need a competitor with deep pockets. Additionally, this competitor would need to be unethical enough to want to purchase stolen code, which could get their entire company shut down.
In this day and age no company would risk that. The real risk is that your competitors will buy a copy of your software and then reverse engineer the features you have already built. This would be the less costly and completely legal way for your competitors to build similar software.
Instead of being concerned with a developer stealing code, we recommend our clients spend their time building strong relationships with their developer, just as they would a local employee. Take time to know about them and their family. Treat them like you would someone sitting at the desk next to you. Building a strong relationship of trust with your employees (whether US-based or foreign) will protect you and your company from attacks better than any other security measures in the market.