The value of your intellectual property cannot be underestimated. In fact, it may more essential than some of the tangible assets that you or your company own. Fortunately, there are a number of ways to keep your intellectual property safe from theft and fraud.
An initial patent is important for protecting your intellectual property as you develop your idea and seek investors. A patent ensures that your idea stays safe as you do further research or shop it around. Should you move on to other projects, the patent can always be sold to someone else interested in developing it. It is important to note that your patent will only protect your intellectual property in the United States. As such, if someone files a patent in another country for the same idea, you will have no rights over it in that country. If you have investors backing your idea, this could lead to problems down the line.
Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDAs)
Very few ideas or products are produced in total isolation. You will need to use confidentiality and non-disclosure agreements when you discuss your intellectual property with prospective partners or investors. It is essential to have an experienced business lawyer create a strong NDA that will be legally binding and truly protect your intellectual property. Consider using NDAs for employees, sales contracts, and licenses as well.
Ensure Name Recognition
If your intellectual property is not a trade secret, then one of the best and easiest ways to protect it is to make sure it is associated with your company’s name. This means making public reference to your idea, both online and in traditional media, and always giving your company name recognition at the same time. The more closely you are associated with your intellectual property, the harder it will be for others to infringe upon it.
Safeguard Company Data
Invest in cybersecurity to protect all the data relating to your intellectual property. Failure to do so makes you an easy target for hackers and ransomware. Within your company, access to the data should be protected by an identity and access-management program that uses at least two-factor authentication. According to industry experts, compromised credentials are responsible for 81 percent of breaches.
Protecting your intellectual property can be as easy as limiting who has access to it. Some companies have separate teams engineering different components of a product in different locations to limit contact and transfer of knowledge. None of the teams have access to the finished product.
By the same token, it may be difficult to protect intellectual property if ownership is spread among partners or investors. Limiting ownership can be the best way to ensure that proprietary information is secure.
Work with Experienced Counsel
Intellectual property is the lifeblood of many businesses. Working with a business lawyer with extensive experience protecting intellectual property may be the smartest investment you make in your company.
Philadelphia Business Lawyers at Harty Law Group Can Help Secure Your Intellectual Property
Contact the experienced Philadelphia business lawyers at Harty Law Group for skilled counsel on intellectual property infringement. Whether you need an NDA or a cease and desist letter, we can help you. Call 267-383-3899 today to schedule a consultation or contact us online. With offices in Philadelphia and Haddonfield, we proudly serve clients throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey.