With the new EU Trade Secrets Directive coming into force in June 2018, Dr Chris Hayes of Lewis Silkin details his top 5 tips for protecting trade secrets.
1. Identify your most valuable trade secrets
This may seem like a daunting task, but it can certainly be streamlined by focussing on the business’ most valuable trade secrets.
2. Create a secure register or trade secrets
Once you have identified your trade secrets, keep a register of the trade secrets, including information about how the secrets are stored and who has access to them.
3. Limit access to sensitive areas and information
Consider restricting access to sensitive areas of your business premises, for example, does everyone in the company really need access to prototype development labs? Make sure only key employees who need to have access to trade secrets actually have access to them.
4. Maintain secrecy with external entities
When engaging external entities such as contractors, make sure there is a contract in place with sufficiently strong confidentiality provisions to ensure that access to trade secrets is restricted by the external organisation and there is no unauthorised disclosure of the trade secret.
5. Develop internal training and policies
Educate staff that they will sometimes have access to trade secret and educate them on the importance of keeping this information secret and develop policies that all staff are aware of, to identify, manage and protect trade secrets in the business.
Chris Hayes (Partner, Lewis Silkin) 1 February 2018
[This article has been published with the permission of the author. The original article can be found at http://www.lewissilkin.com/Insights/Top-5-tips-for-protecting-trade-secrets]