Data and Secrecy Laws, They Are a-Changin'

Data and Secrecy Laws, They Are a-Changin' Maksym Yemelyanov - Fotolia

Laws dealing with trade secrets, restrictive covenants and social media have undergone major changes explains Seyfarth Shaw partner Robert Milligan. On Trading Secrets, he offers tips on how to head off problems, based on the firm’s recent webinar, “Trade Secret and Noncompete Legislative Update.”

Above all, take a holistic approach to protecting trade secrets and confidential information:

  • Use nonsolicit, nondisclosure and invention assignment agreements and implement entrance and exit interviews to educate employees on nondisclosure obligations.
  • Institute regular training to reinforce the importance of confidentiality and create various levels of security access to business information.
  • Regularly evaluate your trade secret protection policies/protocols, forensically reviewing the computer use of departing employees that have access to confidential information.

Attorneys should expect a greater trend toward uniformity in trade secrets law and a continued attempt to regulate this area at the federal level, says Milligan. He advises companies to review their polices and procedures regularly to ensure they are consistent with the latest developments.

Even if the business has operations in a state that does not prohibit employers from requiring employees and applicants to provide “personal” social media logins or access, Milligan says it’s still best to avoid asking for this information, unless you need to investigate workplace misconduct.

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