Confidential Information

News & Analysis as of

Why You May Want To Reconsider Promising Confidentiality To Whistleblowers

In this recent post, I suggested that absolute guarantees of confidentiality to whistleblowers may be counterproductive. In today’s post, I will elaborate on why....more

Please Don’t Do This With Your US NDAs

Over the past two weeks, I’ve reviewed two non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) for Northern Irish companies that are expanding to the US. I’ve written about NDAs in the past: NDAs and You: Perfect Together. The NDAs were...more

Attention, Businesses! Federal Law Provides New Tools for Protecting Your Trade Secrets

Your business’s formula for success may not be akin to a recipe for a secret sauce. But it is likely that you do not want to share with your direct competitors the unique business methods you have developed over time or your...more

NLRB Ruling in Social Media Case Provides Useful Guidance for Employers

Drafting a social media policy in compliance with Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA” or “the Act”) has become increasingly challenging for employers, as the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB” or “the...more

Franchise Relationships, Personal Information and Trade Secret Liability

Corporate entities that share confidential personal information with each other, including those in franchise relationships, should strongly consider potential privacy and trade secret risks and consider available alternative...more

Florida Court Holds Budget Request Forms and Activity and Service Fee Records Not “Educational Records”

On August 11, 2016, a Florida state court judge held that the University Central Florida Board of Trustees (“UCF”) must produce Budget Request forms and Activity and Service Fee Database records to Knight News, Inc. (“KNI”)...more

Three Considerations For Drafting A Code of Business Conduct

Although the Securities and Exchange Commission does not require that a company adopt a code of business conduct and ethics, I would be very surprised to hear of an SEC reporting company that has not adopted such a code. ...more

Industrial Espionage and the Defend Trade Secrets Act

American corporations are facing an ever increasing threat of misappropriation of their valuable trade secrets through industrial espionage, defined as the theft of a company’s trade secrets by an actor intending to convert...more

Labor & Employment E-Note - August 2016

In an article published on August 12, 2016 by Advance Healthcare Network, Bryance Metheny provides guidance to employers who need to prepare for the recent changes issued by the Department of Labor ("DOL") to the federal...more

Augmented Reality

If you haven’t heard about newest gaming craze yet, it’s based on what is called “augmented reality” (AR) and it could potentially impinge on your home life and workplace as such games allow users to “photograph” imaginary...more

SDNY Prosecutors Score First Post-Newman Insider Trading Conviction

On August 17, 2016, jurors in a New York federal court convicted Sean Stewart on criminal charges of conspiracy, securities fraud, and tender offer fraud after more than five days of deliberation. Stewart, a former...more

European Banking Authority Consults on Draft Standards for Payment Service Providers

The European Banking Authority published a consultation paper on draft Regulatory Technical Standards specifying the requirements of strong customer authentication and secure communication under the revised Payment Services...more

Special Report: The NLRB’s Complaint Against Bridgewater and What It Means for Investment Managers

Key Points - - The National Labor Relations Board has filed a complaint against Bridgewater Associates, challenging contractual provisions of a type that are commonplace at hedge funds and private equity firms. ...more

What, If Anything, Impedes The SEC’s Whistleblower Rule?

As I suspected, law firms are churning out memoranda on the SEC’s recent enforcement actions involving alleged impediments to whistleblowers. While accurately, summarizing these actions, I’m not sure that some of the authors...more

August 2016: Seizures as a Remedy Under the New Federal Trade Secrets Act

On May 11, 2016, President Obama signed the Defend Trade Secrets Act (DTSA), creating a new federal cause of action for the misappropriation of trade secrets. Prior to the DTSA, trade secret claims were governed by state law....more

The Science Behind Expert Disqualification

Basic Test - Why stop at excluding expert testimony when you can exclude the expert? For years, expert witness conflicts doctrine has been developed through the federal common law. Although appellate courts have been...more

SEC Enforcement Actions May Require Changes to Severance Agreements

Public companies should revisit their template severance agreements, in light of two recent orders by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Standard severance clauses covering (1) confidential information and (2)...more

Your daily dose of financial news - The Brief – 8.18.16

A SDNY jury has found former JPMorgan banker Sean Stewart guilty of insider trading based on allegations that Stewart was leaking confidential information about health care company mergers to his dad....more

SEC Continues Crackdown on Whistleblower Restrictions: Calls Qui Tam Waivers "Targeting"

The SEC announced its second enforcement action in a week against a company using severance or confidentiality agreements requiring employees to waive whistleblower bounties or their right to bring a qui tam action....more

SEC Fines Companies for Anti-Whistleblower Language in Severance Agreements

The Securities and Exchange Commission recently announced the settlement of two proceedings regarding the SEC’s whistleblower protection framework, resulting in over $500,000 in penalties. Both of the companies were charged...more

SEC Settlements Put Severance Agreements Under Increased Scrutiny

The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently announced settlements with two companies for using severance agreements that allegedly violated Rule 21F-17. Rule 21F-17 provides that “[n]o person may take any action...more

FEATURE: Proper Use of Confidential Information Provisions

One of the significant pitfalls businesses encounter is the misuse of confidentiality provisions in company policies and employment agreements. Nearly all employers include restrictive covenants prohibiting the use or...more

ICO Responds to the ePrivacy Directive Consultation

In April, we reported that the European Commission had opened a public consultation seeking the views of various stakeholders on the current wording of, and possible changes to, the Privacy and Electronic Communications...more

SEC Settles Charges for Violation of Whistleblower Program’s Prohibition of Impediments to Communications Regarding Possible...

On August 10, 2016, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced a settlement with BlueLinx Holdings Inc. concerning alleged violations of the Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Program’s prohibition on impeding whistleblower...more

SEC Fines Company for Agreements Restricting Whistleblowers

The SEC has fined an Atlanta company $265,000 for using various severance agreements restricting whistleblower activities. The Dodd-Frank Act added ’34 Act § 21F encouraging whistleblower programs....more

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