District Judge LaShann DeArcy Hall
Haber was a salesperson for Art and Cook Inc. (A&C). A search of Haber’s work computer prior to his termination revealed he sent spreadsheets containing information about A&C’s customers, and branding/marketing strategies for its “Gripps” product line to his personal email account. A&C alleged Haber stole trade secrets and violated the Defend Trade Secrets Act (DTSA). The court denied A&C a preliminary injunction, finding it unlikely to succeed on its DTSA claim. Its customer contacts were generally known within its industry. Although the design and marketing strategies for its “Gripps” brand were the sort of information the DTSA was designed to protect, A&C failed to show it took “reasonable measures” to keep such information secret. It did not ask Haber to sign an employee handbook and nondisclosure agreement until three years into his employment. When he refused, A&C still gave him access to what it claimed was valuable, confidential information. Nor was other employees’ access limited after they similarly refused to sign. Thus the court could not conclude that A&C was likely to succeed with its proposition that other steps it took to protect its purported trade secrets should be afforded DTSA protection.