There are few business people today who would not agree that intellectual property (IP), of one form or another, is a key business asset. One area of new focus is trade secrets, which are becoming an increasingly valuable form of IP, particularly as new enforcement mechanisms are available through the Defend Trade Secrets Act. However, IP protection programs frequently do not protect trade secrets adequately, nor do they provide sufficient preparation for eventual trade secret enforcement actions. The likelihood of trade secret misappropriation increases—as does the difficulty (and expense) of enforcement efforts—when these matters are not addressed in advance. Fortunately, in-house counsel responsible for managing and enforcing their company’s trade secret portfolio can take many practical steps to improve outcomes.
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