What Is Intellectual Property?
Have you developed an invention or piece of work that you believe is unlike anything else out there? If so- it can be tempting to launch the idea and get it out into the world. However, before you do, you should understand how to protect your intellectual property!
You would define intellectual property as any invention, art, name or original concept that requires “intellect” to create. Putting the proper legal elements into place to protect these creations is important so you can guarantee no one can legally replicate or copy your idea. There is a range of choices open to you when it comes to protecting intellectual property.
Copyrights, Patents And Trademarks
Three of the most popular ways to protect your intellectual property are copyrights, trademarks, and patents. These are all used for different types of intellectual property.
Copyrights are used to protect a unique piece of work. It is important to note that as soon as someone creates a unique drawing, writing or designed piece, they have a copyright on that work. However, to ensure you can more easily defend yourself from a legal standpoint, it is important to register your work. You can do this online or in person and then you can be confident that you get credit for your unique idea.
Patents are more commonly used with one-of-a-kind inventions, machines or even chemical formulas. You can file for a patent online and if you get it, others will not be allowed to produce or sell your invention without you giving them a license. There are many different variables within this process and it is important that you file the correct way for your unique invention. An experienced business attorney like Bellavia Blatt can help you file properly and get the protection you need.
Trademarks are something you’ll want to look into when trying to protect parts of your business’s identity. This can encompass things like your business name, tagline, jingle, logo or other marketing elements. You’ll want to register your unique trademark online to ensure your businesses assets can only be used by your business. However, this can also be a very complex process and using a business attorney to ensure it is done correctly is highly recommended.
When it comes to your intellectual property, it is vital that you understand the difference between copyrights, patents and trademarks so your ideas can stay protected.
Keep Your Information Private
Another way to protect your intellectual property is to ensure that you keep private information private. In many businesses, there is often important or confidential data that you should not release to the public. This could be insider information about a unique product you’re about to launch, confidential numbers you don’t want your competitors to see or even a component of your company’s sales process. Whatever the information is, there are ways for you to keep it from being heard by unwanted ears.
The first thing you’ll want to do is look at any employees or partners that would know confidential information about your product. Next, you will want to work with a business attorney to craft a legally binding confidentiality agreement for these individuals to sign. These agreements require the employees and partners to keep certain information secret. They are often classified as a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA), a Secrecy Agreement (SA), or a Confidential Disclosure Agreement (CDA).
Once you have these in place and are confident an employee or partner will not leak your information, it is important to also think about online security.
Many businesses today utilize the internet to help manage their business. While this often makes business operations easier, one disadvantage of keeping data online is the possibility of hacking or corruption. Thus, there is a need to incorporate stringent protection steps like encrypting data, using password protection for networks, and implementing Wi-fi protected access. If you are concerned about your security protocols, recruiting a trustworthy IT team to enforce these protection precautions is advisable.
Make sure to take these necessary steps to keep your information secure so no leaks will happen and cost you money!
Claim Your Names
You can further secure your creation and identity by registering the company, product, or online names connected with your business. Even if you are only in the planning phases of developing your company, claiming your name wherever possible can ensure no one else comes in and takes your business identity.
Registering your business or product name is commonly done through your specific state and the process to do so varies depending on several factors. It is always best to do this through a business attorney to make sure it is done right.
However, domain names, social media handles and other online elements can be easily claimed online. To claim your website’s domain name you can quickly purchase it through websites like Godaddy, Bluehost or Namecheap. Once you are paying for it, that domain name is now yours and others are unable to use it.
Don’t lose your business identity! Claim your name wherever you can, as soon as you can.
Protect Your Intellectual Property
Intellectual property helps to brand your business and differentiate you from the competition. Additionally, with the right ideas or inventions you could create a significant income stream with your business’s intellectual property. Therefore, securing your IP and preventing anyone from utilizing, copying, or selling it without your permission is vital. Contact one of our Bellavia Blatt attorneys today and let’s get you the protection you need to succeed!