An item or process may be considered a trade secret if the confidential information was maintained using appropriate standards as established by law. Our attorneys can discuss your circumstances and help setup business standards to maintain trade secret status.
What is a Trade Secret?
Any confidential information that can be sold, or licensed can be turned into a trade secret, such as a specific recipe, manufacturing processing, a method or design, or a combination of elements. If it meets certain qualifications your confidential information can become an intellectual property right called a trade secret.
Would my confidential information qualify as a Trade Secret?
Answering yes to these questions may mean you qualify for a trade secret:
- Is your information an actual secret, known to just a few?
- Is it valuable commercially? Is it confidential information that gives your business an advantage over competitors?
- Do you take reasonable steps to keep the information a secret? For instance, do you use non-disclosures / confidentiality agreements or non-compete agreements with employees? Is your company’s IT able to combat theft by hackers?
Why would I want my confidential Information to become a trade secret?
Trade secrets, as long as they remain a secret, can protect indefinitely – the protection will never expire. Trade secret protection is relatively cost effective, easy to obtain and maintain. Trade secrets can add a unique mystique to your product and give a boost to your advertising. Trade secrets protect against unauthorize use, acquisition, or disclosure of the information. It means you have legal recourse to respond to dishonest commercial use, unfair practices, and violations of your intellectual property rights.