Trade Secrets Trends

Trade Secrets Trends

Analysis and commentary on the latest developments in trade secrets protection, disputes, and enforcement

Category Archives: Data Protection

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Government Contractor Argues the Insider Threat

Posted in Data Protection, U.S. Litigation
Last week, government contractor Advanced Fluid Systems Inc. wrapped up its summary judgment briefing in a case loaded with trade secrets trends.  In June, Advanced sought summary judgment in the Middle District of Pennsylvania on its claims for misappropriation of trade secrets, and aiding and abetting breach of fiduciary duty.  Advanced had sued a former… Continue Reading

United States v. Nosal: Keep Your Friends Close, but Your Passwords Even Closer

Posted in Criminal Prosecution, Data Protection, U.S. Litigation
On July 5, 2016, the Ninth Circuit affirmed the conviction of David Nosal, an ex-employee of Korn/Ferry, an executive search firm, who left to start a competing firm. With Nosal’s knowledge and encouragement, two other former employees of Korn/Ferry used a current employee’s credentials to gain access to the Korn/Ferry database and take confidential information.… Continue Reading

Federal Trade Secrets Bill Headed to House Vote Wednesday

Posted in Data Protection, Legislation & Policy, U.S. Litigation
A federal civil cause of action for trade secrets misappropriation appears to be quickly becoming reality. Following the lead of the Senate, on Wednesday, April 20, the U.S. House Judiciary Committee approved the Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2015, S. 1890, without amendment. The bipartisan bill will now head to the full House of Representatives… Continue Reading

Senate Unanimously Votes to Create Federal Civil Action for Trade Secrets Misappropriation

Posted in Data Protection, Legislation & Policy, U.S. Litigation
On Monday April 4, after remarks from the bill’s sponsors Orrin Hatch (R) Utah and Christopher Coons (D) Delaware, the Senate voted 87-0 in favor of the Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2015, S. 1890. As we have previously reported, the Act will create a federal civil cause of action for trade secrets misappropriation, which… Continue Reading

Best Practices for Responding to Potential Trade Secret Theft

Posted in Criminal Prosecution, Cyberhacking, Data Protection, U.S. Litigation
Companies sometimes discover warning signs or clear activity of trade secret theft but do not know how to deal with the issue right away.  Whether it is a current employee who remotely accesses company trade secret information while on vacation, or a departing employee who conveniently failed to return a company laptop, that company may… Continue Reading

Santa’s 10 Considerations for Maintaining Trade Secrets at the North Pole

Posted in Data Protection, Legislation & Policy
Santa’s 10 considerations for maintaining trade secrets at the North Pole: Restrict access to facility by choosing remote location. Make the Elves sign Confidentiality Agreements as part of the hiring process. Have robust exit interviews with all departing elves, reminding them of their obligations to keep “reindeer games” secrets. Insist that gift wrapping specialists with prior… Continue Reading

DuPont, Corning, and Others Speak Out in Support of Defend Trade Secrets Act at Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing

Posted in Data Protection, Legislation & Policy, U.S. Litigation
On Wednesday November 2, the Senate Judiciary Committee held a hearing on the pending Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2015, S. 1890. We have previously reported on the Act, which will create a federal civil cause of action for trade secret misappropriation, which includes an ex parte seizure provision. The hearing began with Chairman Grassley… Continue Reading

Keeping Up with Cybercriminals: House Passes Bill to Formally Establish National Computer Forensics Institute

Posted in Criminal Prosecution, Cyberhacking, Data Protection, Legislation & Policy
On Monday November 30, the House demonstrated its resolve to fight high-tech crime such as trade secret theft by passing the Strengthening State and Local Cyber Crime Fighting Act (H.R. 3490). The Act formally establishes the National Computer Forensics Institute, which is located in Hoover, Alabama and has been operating since 2008. Under the Act,… Continue Reading

U.S. and China Agree on Joint Efforts Against Theft of Corporate IP

Posted in Cyberhacking, Data Protection
  This past Friday, President Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping announced that the United States and China had reached a “common understanding” to fight state-sponsored, corporate cyber espionage between the countries. During a joint press conference, President Obama said that “neither the U.S. nor the Chinese government will conduct or knowingly support cyber… Continue Reading

Access v. Use: An Important Distinction in the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act

Posted in Data Protection, Non-Competes, U.S. Litigation
Earlier this month, the District Court for the Northern District of California addressed the scope of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (“CFAA”), drawing a firm line between causes of action based on improper access of an employer’s computer, and causes of action based on improper use of the employer’s data.  Because of the narrow… Continue Reading

Universities and Economic Espionage: Real Risks and New Burdens

Posted in Criminal Prosecution, Data Protection
The recent arrests of Chinese nationals for alleged economic espionage are raising eyebrows across American industries, who are rightfully asking how they can protect themselves from becoming the next foreign target. U.S. universities have been key figures in these headlines. The risk of economic espionage is a serious one for higher education because universities are… Continue Reading

Top 10 Trade Secrets Decisions of 2013

Posted in Cyberhacking, Data Protection
With the ability to move large volumes of information electronically very quickly, the threats from cyber intrusions, joint development partners, and rogue employees are more significant every day. Dollars lost due to trade secret theft tally in the tens if not hundreds of millions annually. President Obama in his State of the Union address warned of the… Continue Reading