In an effort to assist companies to better protect their intellectual property and to avoid being accused of stealing IP from other companies, I will provide one easy to follow tip each week.
The most common scenario for companies to become defendants in theft of trade secret cases arises when hiring personnel from competitors. New employees in this situation often bring with them confidential and proprietary information from their former employer to help them succeed at their new employer. Companies can no longer expect to avoid liability for their new employees’ use of such information, even where they have no knowledge of the new employees’ actions. Accordingly,
TIP #1: WHEN HIRING PERSONNEL FROM A DIRECT COMPETITOR, EMPLOYERS SHOULD MAKE A THOROUGH, MEANINGFUL, AND DILIGENT EFFORTS TO ENSURE THAT THEIR NEW HIRES HAVE NOT TAKEN ANY OF THEIR FORMER EMPLOYER’S ELECTRONIC OR HARD COPY RECORDS.