You’ve got plenty to occupy you 24/7 as an Atlanta area business principal. Maybe your company is undergoing material expansion. Perhaps the enterprise is negotiating a new property lease. Labor law issues and employee matters spell top-tier and ongoing concerns for most businesses. So too do challenges ranging from risk identification/mitigation and regulatory exactions to tax compliance, the encroaching actions of commercial rivals and more.
And then there is this: the need to rigorously and effectively safeguard your proprietary assets from competitors’ scrutiny and public exposure.
How important is that?
Candidly, it is a flatly critical imperative in most cases, as noted by an authoritative Atlanta legal source addressing the due protection of prized company assets. That topical overview stresses that, “For many small to medium-sized businesses in Georgia, the intellectual property they possess is often their most valuable asset.”
Protecting trade secrets requires company focus, commitment
Astute business managers know that they can’t leave trade secrets – key catalysts driving company success, such as recipes, formulas, processes, software applications/algorithms, business plans and customer lists – readily open to third-party inspection and possible misappropriation. Doing so would be like a bank manager leaving the vault unlocked each night.
Instead, key business decision makers must timely put in place and periodically review/revise a well-considered program for protection that comprises specific steps and procedures. A company’s timely execution of nondisclosure agreements with employees and business partners (including vendors, suppliers, lenders, various contractors and other parties) is one sound move.
But that spells only a single and incomplete strategy. An in-depth overview of company actions that can collectively safeguard trade secrets in an effective way underscores an integrative strategy that includes taking steps like these:
- Systematic and comprehensive flagging of all data and information deemed to be trade secrets
- Well-organized process for labeling all such material “confidential” and controlling/tracking its circulation
- Exacting corporate knowledge of the whereabouts of all trade secrets and the parties having access to guarded data/info
- High-level computer security all across the company, with stringent password and related protections
- Tightly controlled public access to the business
- Implementation of quality worker training programs, coupled with clear internal policies concerning trade secret protections and handling
- The aforementioned execution when relevant of nondisclosure and noncompete agreements
The importance of trade secrets to a company can scarcely be overstated. Experienced intellectual property legal counsel can provide further information.