We’re all pretty well aware that technology can be a double-edged sword, and it definitely is in terms of protecting your intellectual property. The speed at which technology has integrated itself into society has made it difficult to draw bold lines on ownership.
In business, there are often many people involved in the realization of an idea, and the credit for its excellence loses its way among the chaos. There are ways to get a firmer grasp on what is yours. Intellectual property can be protected, as long as you have the proper knowledge.
Here are a few challenges and solutions for the ongoing issue of protecting your intellectual property in business.
Common protection for intellectual property
When you’re seeking out protection for your intellectual property, there are a few common terms you will encounter. First, understand what defines intellectual property.
IP is a piece of work or an invention you created that may not be tangible. It could be something very simple yet impactful. Use the web to dig into the wide definition of the term intellectual property.
Then, work to familiarize yourself with the meaning of these terms.
- Copyrights – Copyrights are used to secure the owner’s rights over original artistic works, typically including literary works, music, videos, architecture, computer software, and more.
- Trademarks – Trademarks are protection for branding aspects like special words, phrases, or symbols that are commonly used to represent a product, service, or particular organization.
- Patents – Patents are used to protect the rights you have over your inventions. They lock down the rights to the invention for a predetermined amount of time.
- Trade Secrets – Trade Secrets are put in place for protection over things such as formulas, programs, and data.
Avoiding infringement on ownership is tricky
The impact of technology has made it rather difficult to control IP infringement in certain industries. Your business is also at risk of unknowingly infringing upon the legal ownership of someone else’s intellectual property.
Be careful not to incorporate any type of content that wasn’t created by you or your business. Infringing on another individual or company’s IP rights can result in costly charges.
Separate engineering teams on big projects
There are some active steps you can take in business to protect the intellectual property that keeps your operation fresh and successful. When you’re working on a big project, separate engineering teams.
Separating the engineering teams will make it so that no one piece of the team has the schematics for the whole project. It will protect your professionals from having the power to abuse the knowledge they acquire from working with your organization.
Integrate strong non-disclosure agreements
If you don’t get it in writing, you won’t have as much control over your intellectual property. Even your employees can be a risk to your organization’s IP, so you need protection from them as well. Make sure you have a strong non-disclosure contract worked into their employment agreement.