Lawyer in Israël


Trade secret

Most companies have products, techniques, practices, or else that they invented or discovered and these things are trade secrets. A trade secret includes any information about these products, techniques, practices or else and the public disclosure of them is prohibited by law.


This means that nobody has the right to talk about them to anyone not belonging to the same company or not being allowed to receive information about them. These secrets generally give the company an edge over its competitors.


A “trade secret” is any type of information that is not known by other companies and is kept secretly within the company. The secret must be an invention, development, product, or something to which the company acquired the right of use in good faith. The trade secret must give the company a commercial advantage and must have a certain value.


It must be protected so that no one can discover it and the company is responsible for its defense by all means in its possession.


Trade secret is the reason why most of the employment contracts have a confidentiality clause which is mandatory for the employee and another one that bans an employee that finished his contract to work in any other company of the same type for a certain period. All this in order to protect confidentiality and avoid disclosing information that could allow competitors to discover the trade secret.


To be sure to avoid having problems or complaints, all business owners employing new employees give them explicit instructions forbidding them to use the knowledge they acquired from their former employer.


Disclosing trade secrets is a crime punishable by law. There are several ways to violate trade secrets such as the acquisition of them by illegal means, using them without the owner’s permission, and others. In most countries, laws are quite similar, but one thing remains constant for all, a company interested in maintaining a trade secret should patent it so as not to get stuck by someone else that could discover this secret by chance and in good faith and patenting it as his own.


This has happened before and therefore all countries recommend to patent any exclusive invention, discovery or new development as soon as possible.