Trade Secrets are confidential information that is unique and valuable to your business. Here are steps you must take to protect your company’s trade secrets.
Treat as Confidential. A trade secret must be information used in your business that’s not generally known to the public. Information you voluntarily provide to people outside your company cannot be protected as a trade secret unless the recipient signs an appropriate confidentiality agreement. Monitor the type of information your business voluntarily provides to any outsider or third party.
Label. Use a written label or sticker to classify and protect your designated trade secrets. Stamp each page of any trade secret information with “Confidential”.
Limit Access. Limit access to trade secret materials on a need-to-know basis.
- Place hard copies in a locked filing cabinet with limited key access.
- Create secure passwords for computer-stored trade secret information.
- Shred documents containing trade secret materials.
- Wipe the hard drive or other electronic storage medium.
Confidentiality Agreements. Require all employees, consultants, independent contractors and potential business partners to routinely sign confidentially agreements if they may receive or have access to any of your company’s trade secrets.
Establish and Enforce Policies. Establish and enforce your company’s trade secret policy on a daily basis.
For more information, please contact Kathy Tremmel at Tremmel Law, PLLC at (512) 539-0317 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Also see related post Why IP Matters to Your Business.
Kathy Tremmel has significant experience both as a business attorney and corporate executive. Her career spans both legal practice and business management and she opened her own solo law practice in January 2010.