Fabian Demicoli

Commission proposes rules to help protect against the theft of confidential business information


The European
Commission has proposed new rules on the protection of undisclosed know-how and
business information (trade secrets) against their unlawful acquisition, use
and disclosure. The draft directive introduces a common definition of trade
secrets, as well as means through which victims of trade secret
misappropriation can obtain redress.
 

It will make it easier for national courts
to deal with the misappropriation of confidential business information, to
remove the trade secret infringing products from the market and make it easier
for victims to receive damages for illegal actions.

Commissioner
for Internal Market and Services Michel Barnier said: "Cybercrime and
industrial espionage are unfortunately part of the reality that businesses in
Europe face every day. We have to make sure our laws move with the times and
that the strategic assets of our companies are adequately protected against
theft and misuse… "

Vice-President
Antonio Tajani added: "Protecting trade secrets is particularly important
for the EU's smaller, less established firms. They employ trade secrecy more
intensively than larger companies – in part because of the cost of patenting
and protection against infringement. …".

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