Friday, May 11, 2007, 5/11/2007 10:01:00 AM

"This May Be The Darkest Secret of Corporate India . . . . "

By Todd
India's recently posted an interesting piece concerning a novel aspect of India's corporate trade secrets thievery. It's a short piece, with a good lead. We've copied it below.

"This may be the darkest secret of corporate India. Several Indian companies are stalking B-school campuses and hiring students with the sole aim of gaining trade secrets of their rivals, reports CNBC-TV18.

A 25-year old MBA student from one of the leading business schools in India succeeded in breaking through the security barriers of 10 banks in India. He was picked up by an MNC bank from his campus to do a live company project. His assignment involved getting classified information from the bank's competitors. But he was instructed to approach rival companies posing not as an employee but as a student working on an academic project.

A student said, “Its easy when you pose as a student because then corporates normally help you out.”

He gained access to various strategies followed by banks to service their HNI customers. Students use these projects to pump up their CVs. But business schools are getting concerned about such malpractices.

Prakash G Apte, Director, IIM Bangalore, said, “I think industrial bodies like Assocham and CII should come forward and put a stop to such things.”

Ashvin Parekh, Partner, Ernst & Young, said, “Using students for getting information from rivals is becoming rampant.”

Leading corporates have reacted with shock to this investigation saying they will have to go back to the drawing board to rework security checks. The next time you open your company's cards to a student, beware."

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