Wednesday, January 13, 2016

What Makes a Trade Secret a Trade Secret?

Article 39 of the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights Agreement (TRIPS) provides general guidance on necessary conditions for trade secrets:
  • The information must be secret (i.e. it is not generally known among, or readily accessible to, circles that normally deal with the kind of information in question);
  • It must have commercial value because it is a secret; and
  • It must have been subject to reasonable steps by the rightful holder of the information to keep it secret (e.g., through confidentiality agreements, non-disclosure agreements, etc.). more
The "etc." part also includes providing extra security for the information, and the areas where it is generated, stored and used. Periodic Technical Surveillance Countermeasures inspections (TSCM) are a very important part of these conditions. Contact me for more information about this.