TRADE SECRETS & CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION

Confidential Information Theft LawyerConfidential Information Theft Lawyer | Alex McDonald | Intellectual Property Lawyer

Trade secrets and confidential information are not recognised as property. However there is a recognised obligation not to misuse confidential information. This is the action for breach of confidence which is a common law right established by case law.

The action protects information which is not in the public domain which has a quality of confidence about it and is disclosed in confidential circumstances. Typically it is business confidential information. What makes the information confidential is that the maker has used time, energy and skill in producing it, often at considerable expense. The basic principle is that the law will stop unauthorised use by competitors of that information to take short cuts.

The sort of things that are capable of being the subject to an action for breach of confidence are designs and plans, strategic planning budgets, budgetary information, customer lists and ideas for commercial opportunities.

Breach of confidence cases often involve an application for an interim injunction against departing employees. In those cases the Court will be guided by the “springboard” doctrine so that the party who receives confidential information in advance of it going public must not use it as a short cut to avoid doing the work that it would otherwise have to do to be in a position to compete. To achieve that the Court will grant an interim injunction for a period of time to cover a reasonable non-compete period.

TRADE SECRETS & CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION

Confidential Information Theft Lawyer

Confidential Information Theft Lawyer | Alex McDonald | Intellectual Property Lawyer

Trade secrets and confidential information are not recognised as property. However there is a recognised obligation not to misuse confidential information. This is the action for breach of confidence which is a common law right established by case law.

The action protects information which is not in the public domain which has a quality of confidence about it and is disclosed in confidential circumstances. Typically it is business confidential information. What makes the information confidential is that the maker has used time, energy and skill in producing it, often at considerable expense. The basic principle is that the law will stop unauthorised use by competitors of that information to take short cuts.

The sort of things that are capable of being the subject to an action for breach of confidence are designs and plans, strategic planning budgets, budgetary information, customer lists and ideas for commercial opportunities.

Breach of confidence cases often involve an application for an interim injunction against departing employees. In those cases the Court will be guided by the “springboard” doctrine so that the party who receives confidential information in advance of it going public must not use it as a short cut to avoid doing the work that it would otherwise have to do to be in a position to compete. To achieve that the Court will grant an interim injunction for a period of time to cover a reasonable non-compete period.