secretos_empresariales_proteccion de datos

Trade secrets and data protection – Part 1

A company’s data is one of its most valuable assets. And information is power. Today we are going to discuss trade secrets and the Law on Trade Secrets, shedding some light on the topic and addressing the protection of data they generate.

Defining trade secrets

Trade secrets are confidential information with economic value for a company and they can be used to gain competitive advantage in the market.

The definition given by the Law on Trade Secrets (LSE) is very broad, whereby a trade secret is considered to be any information or knowledge, including technological, scientific, industrial, commercial, organisational or financial knowledge. It can include designs, formulas, processes, business strategies, customer lists and much more.

To be protected as a trade secret, the knowledge or information must be secret, meaning that it is only known by a limited number of people and it cannot be deduced by industry experts through observation or reverse engineering.

Law that protects secrets

The Law on Trade Secrets aims to protect and guarantee the confidentiality of business information that has economic value and is kept secret by the company. This law states that trade secret is considered to be all information that:

1. Has business and economic value.
2. Is not in the public domain.
3. Has been established only for employees or owners of the company, having sufficient protection measures.

The LSE will only apply when it can be proven that the company has adopted specific measures to reinforce the security of the information or knowledge to be protected. In particular, the protection of companies must be based on the following pillars:

– Identification of information or knowledge considered to be sensitive.
– Adoption of security measures that guarantee security.
– Preventive legal measures such as the signing of confidentiality agreements.
– Reactive measures such as the implementation of action protocols when a violation of security measures is detected.

The Law on Trade Secrets states that the unauthorised disclosure, collection and use of information related to trade secrets will be considered a crime.

In the event of trade secret violation, the company affected may sue the offender and seek an injunction, as well as compensation for damages incurred. Ultimately, the purpose of this law is to protect companies against the violation of their confidential information and ensure the right to maintain trade secret confidentiality.

This is the end of the first part; in future posts we will discuss trade secret violations from a practical perspective.