Recognizing and Minimizing Intellectual Property Risk
Because of the innovation that surrounds the information technology, intellectual property rights require the same or perhaps greater protection so that the incentives for innovation because of resulting ownership are protected. The rapid growth and promulgation of information technology has presented new challenges for interpretation and application of intellectual property law. Even though improperly managed intellectual property is considered a risk to most organizations, deciding whether to protect that intellectual property as a patent or a trade secret is the key to minimizing the risk because the major security vulnerability is with those most closely associated with the company and a necessary strategy is to implement restrictive agreements and maintain physical and network security to insure the secrecy of information by those of whom are authorized.
Deciding whether to protect intellectual property as a patent or a trade secret is the key to minimizing risk. In order to determine the best approach you must understand the difference between a patent and a trade secret. Jennings defines a patent as “government license or protection for a process, product, or service” (Jennings, 2006) and continues to define a trade secret as “a protected method for doing business or an item crucial to a business’s success.” Based on your business model you must determine if your overall concern is with the secrecy of your trade or the financial gains that a patent can afford you. “The patent does not in and of itself represent any return on investment” (Ferrera, Lichenstein, Reder, Bird, & Schiano, 2006) “that is up to the patent owner to make business decisions on how best to exploit the value of claims covered by the patent.” The down fall to a patent is that upon granting of the license of patent the information required to acquire the patent is now made public for your competitors to see and...