From March to September 2016 the team is joined by Guest Kats Emma Perot and Mike Mireles.

From April to September 2016 the team is also joined by InternKats Eleanor Wilson and Nick Smallwood.

Saturday, 30 July 2016

Book Review: Trade Secret Protection

As is befitting a book on trade secrets, the cover of Trade Secret Protection, edited by Trevor Cook, is shrouded in mystery. Matte black with gold embossments, the book invites to you delve into the world of global protection of trade secrets.

The book covers 32 countries and their trade secrets protection. Each chapter is written by local experts and covers a similar format for the relevant civil and criminal law: substantive aspects, final remedies, procedural aspects, and general considerations. Chapters are generally around 7 pages (14 sides), so the coverage is more broad than deep.

Given the current focus on the Olympics, and because this Kat's years there as student make her partial, let's have a look at the chapter on Brazil. As in many jurisdictions, trade secret protection in Brazil sits across a few areas of law -- unfair competition, TRIPs, an "inviolability of privacy" clause and in a few other spots.  Trade secrets exist not as property rights, but as an, "immaterial right." When this right is assigned, the contract can be registered with the Brazilian Patent and Trademark Office (BPTO.) Author Elisabeth Kasznar Fekete describes the Brazilian system as being very different in terms of licensing, "While the US and other jurisdictions attribute a right of property to trade secrets, in Brazil undisclosed information does not generate a property right... the legal nature of know-how agreements is not considered, from the BPTO's perspective, to be a temporary license but a definitive assignment of rights." Very interesting.

As Cook notes in the introduction, "Trade secrets have only grudgingly started to form an accepted part of the world intellectual property order since TRIPs." I'm really pleased to see more work on trade secrets.  Certainly this book will appeal to the reader eager to access synopses of trade secret protection in key jurisdictions, and in particular non-English speaking ones where information may be less readily accessible. There isn't an index, which I would have liked to have seen as it would enable cross-country comparison. However, most readers will be looking for jurisdiction-specific information, and the book's standard chapter format and organisation by country will satisfy that need.

Trade Secret Protection: A Global Guide with consulting editor Trevor Cook, (2016) Globe Law & Business. ISBN-10: 1909416312 is available for £145.  Rupture factor: Medium, nearly 500 pages.

P.S. I suspect the Amazon.com entry has confused its Trevor Cooks.  Unless our Trevor Cook is also the author of Make Your Own Art, Cool Stuff to Do and Awesome Experiments.

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