Trade Secrecy and International Transactions

Trade Secrecy and International Transactions

Law and Practice

Elgar Intellectual Property Law and Practice series

Elizabeth Rowe and Sharon K. Sandeen

Providing a valuable source of information on the law and practice of trade secrecy in international business transactions, this book provides concise but authoritative insight into international trade secret harmonization efforts and the trade secret laws of many countries. Trade secret law in the United States is promoted as the international standard for trade secret protection and a detailed explanation of the scope and limits of trade secret law in the US is presented here alongside practical guidance on how businesses can enhance trade secret protection while engaging in global commerce.


Elizabeth Rowe and Sharon K. Sandeen

Subjects: law - academic, intellectual property law, law -professional, intellectual property law


As stressed in Chapters 4 and 5, the best strategy for a business that needs to protect its trade secrets is to develop a trade secret protection programme that includes: instituting adequate security measures; obtaining appropriate confidentiality agreements; and vigilance in monitoring for compliance. However, there may come a time when those measures fail and steps must be taken quickly to preserve the trade secret status of threatened information. Whether this can be done successfully depends upon the enforcement mechanisms that are available in the country where enforcement is sought. Thus, consideration should always be given to the available enforcement mechanisms before any trade secrets are disclosed in a given country. It may be that the benefits of offshoring certain business functions are outweighed by the threats to trade secrets, but this is a calculation that should be made consciously with a full appreciation of the risks and benefits. Chapters 9 and 10 provide an overview of the enforcement mechanisms that are available in seven different countries and, more generally, illustrate the range of legal systems and legal processes that exist throughout the world. As a prelude to that discussion, and because US trade secret law is being touted as a model for trade secret harmonization, this chapter highlights the trade secret enforcement mechanisms of the United States, including the civil, criminal and administrative actions.

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