With big companies, intangibles such as copyrights, trademarks and patents have intrinsic value. Keeping proprietary information away from nefarious entities remains a vital responsibility.
Proper steps protect businesses from getting entangled in trade secret litigation. If you helm a corporate venture, do everything possible to negate potential trouble.
Name an employee to head compliance
Task one individual with keeping all intellectual property secure. Doing this frees you to focus on other business concerns. Make this person responsible for recordkeeping, writing security rules and performing exit interviews.
Include trade secret handling in employee training
A lack of clear instruction makes staff more prone to imperiling sensitive information. Explicitly detail standard operating procedures in handbooks and manuals. Stress the potential legal consequences for sloppily managing sensitive data.
Limit disclosure of privileged knowledge
One way of binding people to secrecy is having them sign confidentiality agreements. The importance of doing this grows when dealing with outside partners. You never know when possible allies could have ulterior motives. Disallow the physical copying of confidential information unless doing so is necessary. Include nondisclosure provisions in licensing agreements and when hiring contractors.
Guard electronic documents
Put in place a digital access system. Allow only those with a need to view particular items to receive access keys. Encryption programs can inhibit the unauthorized duplication of materials. Instruct those with downloading permissions to return or destroy the data after jobs.
Safeguarding materials could mean the difference between corporate profit and collapse. Remove vulnerabilities now instead of dealing with regrettable breaches in the future.