Trade Secrets Misappropriation

A Trade Secret is any information, not generally known or easily ascertainable, by which an enterprise develops an economic advantage over competitors or customers. In order to maintain trade secrets'... more +
A Trade Secret is any information, not generally known or easily ascertainable, by which an enterprise develops an economic advantage over competitors or customers. In order to maintain trade secrets' protected legal status, enterprises must make reasonable efforts to keep the information secret and prevent unnecessary disclosure.  Trade Secrets may include processes, formulas, methods, designs, patterns, et cetera.   less -
News & Analysis as of

ITC Affirms Joint and Several Liability of Counsel for Payment of Monetary Sanctions Based on Client's Spoliation of Evidence

On April 30, 2015, the International Trade Commission issued the public version of its opinion reviewing ALJ Thomas B. Pender’s Initial Determination in Investigation No. 337-TA-883, finding the Respondents in default due to...more

State May Not Disclose Trade Secrets Submitted as Part of RFP Response

If you have ever agonized about whether to include certain confidential business information in a bid for a state contract in New Hampshire because of concerns that your competitors might get their hands on it, you should...more

IP Newsflash - May 2015 #3

FEDERAL CIRCUIT CASES - Federal Circuit Reverses Summary Judgment of Noninfringement Under § 271(e)(1) for Consideration of Certain Post-FDA-Submission Activities, But Expresses Skepticism About Infringement...more

Trade Secret Plaintiff Avoids Dismissal, Gets Discovery

One of the most interesting Business Court decisions of last year was Judge Bledsoe's opinion in DSM Dyneema, LLC v. Thagard, 2014 NCBC 50, in which he held that the Plaintiff, which was suing for misappropriation of trade...more

Reviewing the First Foreign Economic Espionage Cases

The Economic Espionage Act of 1996 (EEA) provides for the criminal prosecution of the theft or misappropriation of trade secrets. The statute was enacted to protect and promote national and economic security by filling in...more

Zillow Case Shows Danger of Unprotected Trade Secrets During Business Negotiations

As I mentioned in a prior post on real estate investment vehicles’ use of intellectual property, the real estate industry is not immune from legal disputes arising from that “other” type of property: intellectual property –...more

Things to Think About Before You Leave to Work for a Competitor

An employee who leaves a company to work for a competitor can run into a hornet’s nest of legal problems.  The latest example of this classic fact pattern involves William Georgelis, a sales manager for building material...more

Employer Can Proceed With Breach Of Noncompete And Trade Secrets Claims Against Former Employee Who Refused To Relinquish Control...

Recently, an Illinois federal district court denied in part an employee’s motion to dismiss various claims asserted by his former employer, allowing the employer to proceed with its claims for breach of a non-compete...more

Another Frivolous Trade Secret Case: Court Finds Bad Faith in Cypress v. Maxim

Cypress Semiconductor Corporation and Maxim Integrated Products are two big Silicon Valley tech companies, both with an interest in touchscreen technologies. In February 2011, Maxim engaged a recruiter named Zion Mushel to...more

Meritas Capability Webinar - California’s Prohibition Against Non-Compete Agreements (B&P Code § 16600), the Protection of Trade...

Many attorneys representing company’s in or from other states (freedom of contract jurisdictions) believe a well drafted covenant not to compete can be an employer’s best defense against competition from former employees....more

Meritas Capability Webinar - California’s Prohibition Against Non-Compete Agreements (B&P Code § 16600), the Protection of Trade... [Video]

Many attorneys representing company’s in or from other states (freedom of contract jurisdictions) believe a well drafted covenant not to compete can be an employer’s best defense against competition from former employees....more

All Bets Are Off: Kentucky Downs Trade Secrets Case Presents Novel Question Under Kentucky’s Uniform Trade Secrets Act

Earlier this month, AmTote International, Inc. sued the famed Kentucky Downs racetrack, three high-ranking Kentucky Downs employees, and Encore Gaming, LLC in federal court alleging misappropriation of trade secrets related...more

How Much Damages Can You Realistically Expect for Trade Secrets Misappropriation in China

The best way to protect trade secrets is to prevent them from being misappropriated in the first place, but when trade secret misappropriation occurs, a trade secret holder will likely want to obtain adequate damages through...more

Inside Job – Judge Labson Freeman Applies the CFAA Restrictively

Koninklijke Phillips N.V., et. al. v. Elec-Tech Int’l Co., Ltd., et al.,, Case No. 14-cv-02737 (BLF) (March 20, 2015) - Plaintiff Koninklijke Phillips N.V. (Phillips) and its subsidiary Phillips Lumileds Lighting...more

Executive Order Creates Cybersecurity Sanctions Framework

On April 1, 2015, President Obama issued an Executive Order authorizing the imposition of sanctions against designated individuals or entities found to be engaged in malicious cyber activity, including various forms of...more

POTUS Declares Cybercrime a National Emergency, Announces New Penalties for Trade Secrets Theft

Declaring cybercrime a “national emergency,” President Obama today empowered Treasury to freeze assets that are the fruits of cybercrime, according to an Executive Order issued this afternoon. The agency can block money or...more

Can your social media contacts be a trade secret of your employer? Maybe.

This is a relatively new legal subject, so there isn’t much law out there.  In December, 2011, a Pennsylvania federal court answered this question in the negative.  In the case of Eagle v. Morgan, Linda Eagle, the founder of...more

Protecting food industry innovations as the scope of patentable subject matter narrows

Strong intellectual property increases the value of a company. Copyrights, trademarks, patents, and trade secrets are some avenues to protect intellectual property, but understanding when they’re available and understanding...more

Jury Awards $58.7 Million for Trade Secret Misappropriation After Technology Disclosure Pursuant to NDA

On March 6, in a U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas case, Texas Advanced Optoelectric Solutions (TAOS) Inc. obtained a verdict against Intersil Corp. (Nasdaq: ISIL) for trade secret misappropriation, breach...more

Protecting Innovation and Competitive Advantage: Trade Secrets v. Patents

Patents have long been a method of protecting business innovation. However, before any patent is obtained, confidential innovation that has economic value and is not generally known may already be a trade secret, if it is the...more

Snow Joke: The Weather Channel Zaps Trade Secrets Misappropriation Claims

We have written before about business collaborations gone sour that lead to trade secret misappropriation lawsuits.  In a recent example, The Weather Channel convinced a court to wash away claims that its use of data from a...more

Thirty-Year-Old Conspiracy to Misappropriate Trade Secrets Lives On - ABB Turbo Sys. AG, et al. v. TurboUSA, et al.

Addressing the standard for pleading trade secret misappropriation and conspiracy under Florida law, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit reversed an order from the U.S. District Court for the Southern District...more

Is your confidential information “property” if it does not qualify as a trade secret?

The answer likely is “no” according to a recent decision from a federal court in San Francisco. The plaintiff in that case, a data storage company, alleged that a competitor misappropriated its trade secrets by illegally...more

Has the "Inevitable Disclosure" Doctrine Found a Foothold in North Carolina?

Twenty years ago, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals in PepsiCo, Inc. v. Redmond, 54 F.3d 1262 (7th Cir. 1995) advanced the “inevitable disclosure” doctrine in trade secret misappropriation cases. The doctrine essentially...more

Company’s Bacon Trade Secret Claims Are Cooked After Patent Filing

From Minnesota comes a delicious reminder that the protection of trade secrets requires consideration of a company’s entire intellectual property strategy.  Without such a comprehensive strategy, in the most prosaic of terms,...more

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