I have an innovative business idea which I want to protect before starting working on it. How can I do this?

Although an idea - a business information or valuable know-how - is not protectable by specific intellectual property rights, it can still be secured via contractual mechanisms - by setting up confidentiality obligations. When you meet potential business partners you will have to disclose your idea, explain its intended purpose and describe your expectations concerning the future product or service. It is true that once learned information/know-how cannot be forgotten by your interlocutors.

How can trade secrets be protected?

Trade secrets are not protected by a specific intellectual property right. Therefore trade secrets do not confer “proprietary rights”, meaning that the holder of a trade secret does not have exclusive rights over the information. Thus, to protect trade secrets, organisations are advised to take measures and implement a range of best practices to make sure that the trade secret is kept confidential.

These measures and best practices include: