The Madrid headquarters of Fundación PONS was the venue for the first virtual meeting aimed to Technology Centers between PONS IP and the Spanish Federation of Technology Centers (Fedit), within the framework of the collaboration agreement between the two entities. The webinar had the purpose of offering keys for knowing and applying one of the most effective knowledge protection methods at present after the entry into force of the new Trade Secrets Act in our country in March 2019.
Nuria Marcos, general manager of PONS IP, participated in a meeting led by Áureo Díaz-Carrasco Fenollar, FEDIT’s executive director, who pointed out the importance of “working internally on the training in trade secrets within organizations and research groups, since this protection alternative can be a very important point of progress for our technology centers”.
For the head of PONS IP, “trade secrets complement the protection given by patents and also cover the legal vacuum that hindered knowledge protection, applied to the innovation processes of companies and public entities in Spain and in Europe”. Thus, during her lecture, Nuria Marcos highlighted one by one the most relevant points contained in the Trade Secrets Act on the protection of undisclosed technical knowledge and business information (trade secrets) against illegally obtaining, using and disclosing them, and drew attention to the enormous benefits of Trade Secrets for the adequate protection of knowledge. Among the most relevant advantages, she said it is worth mentioning that:
- Trade secrets are compatible with other means of protection, such as patents.
- There is no time limit on trade secrets, meaning that we can obtain royalties indefinitely.
- Its effect is immediate and does not require registration.
- The cost is minimal, as the only expenses incurred are those necessary to keep the information confidential.
Finally, Nuria Marcos reviewed some requirements for knowledge to be considered or to result in the generation of a trade secret, such as the fact that such a secret has a significant business value and that it has been subject to reasonable measures by its owner to keep it secret. In this sense, the company’s general manager recalled that the law does not give an exact definition of what these “reasonable measures” involve, so “they can be organisational, legal, physical or technological measures, in which we must take advantage of the possibilities offered by new technologies to generate reliable evidence that can be used in the courts of justice in the event of third party breach of trade secrets,” she concluded.