Intellectual property can be found everywhere. It can be a novel, music, an invention, formula, or even an advertising slogan. Just like physical property, it is essential to protect intellectual property so that other people may not use it for themselves and gain money.
Types of Intellectual Property Rights
Intellectual property rights are the rights you have over the things you have originally created. The following are the most common categories of intellectual property rights you should know about:
A trademark has to do with names, visuals, or words that identify your brand or product. While filing for trademark registration is not required, taking advantage of this protection can ensure that your business has exclusive rights to intellectual property. To know more about this, you can visit Morrissey Law.
Copyrights provide businesses with the right to keep other people from copying their work. This type of intellectual property right can protect a certain expression of an idea. However, it cannot protect your business against competitors that may develop a similar concept or a series of processes.
Even though businesses are not required to file their unpublished or published copyright, it is highly recommended to protect their intellectual property better.
Patents can provide your business with the right to prevent others from creating, selling, and using your intellectual property. The patent law can protect your new algorithms or processes, materials, invention, or any combination thereof.
Business owners tend to apply for one of the two types of patents: a design patent or a utility patent. A design patent can help protect the visual assets of your product, while a utility patent can help protect the technology behind your product.
Trade secrets are a type of intellectual property your business or company may choose to keep secret and not share with others. Since this type of intellectual property is not a secret and cannot be filed in any official office, it is vital to know that trade secrets do not offer official protection to your intellectual property.
However, as long as you can provide some evidence that you had made great efforts to protect and hold the trade secret, any theft thereof can be punishable in court.
Ways To Protect Intellectual Property
The following are practical ways that can help you protect your intellectual property:
Don’t File Patents
This is the most distinctive way to help protect your intellectual property. It is vital to know that filing for patents provides the recipe for how you created a product or service. Once this recipe has been published, other people might create a similar product or service with some workarounds to not violate any intellectual property rights.
Document Your Discoveries
Leaks are frequent these days. Although you can’t always get away from them, you can record your innovations and discoveries as they occur. Suppose another competitor obtains some illicit information in a leak and tries to recreate or repurpose your ideas. Your records can help prove your legitimacy and rights over your intellectual property.
Take Advantage of Digital Rights Management (DRM) Systems
If your work has been published online and is very much accessible to users, it is expected that some may attempt to copy your intellectual property. DRM can help protect your online assets by the use of coding that does any of the following:
- Restricts the number of devices that people may use to access your work;
- Limits the window of time or the number of times people can access your work;
- Watermarks your intellectual property in order to establish ownership;
- Prohibits other users from making edits or copying your work;
- It prevents printing, sharing, or even taking a screenshot of your work.
DRM can help limit what a user can do regarding your protected work. This is a standard option for gated online content such as the following:
- Market reports
- Data studies and survey
Select a Strong Nondisclosure Agreements
Nondisclosure agreements (NDA) restrict any involved party from sharing any information or stipulations included in an agreement. It is best to strengthen your defenses against intellectual property rights violations such as trade secret misappropriation, where an individual or employee can share some sensitive IP-related information with other people or your competitors.
Make a Strong Access Credentials
If any of you know a trade secret, it is required to have proactive action to keep it. Without adequate security, it would be challenging for the courts to be convinced that the secret was crucial enough to protect. It is best to use strong credentials to prohibit or restrict access to valuable IP-related information.
To Wrap It Up
Intellectual property refers to any creation of the intellect or mind used in commerce. It can be found everywhere. Moreover, it is essential to protect your business’s intellectual property so that other people won’t easily take advantage of it.