Tiffany Scott Connors authored an article in Seattle Business magazine’s October issue titled “Don’t Be the Next Headline: Protect Your Company’s Trade Secrets!” The article discusses trade secret law, a national and state law that protects any secret that derives independent economic value from not being generally known, and the importance of protecting these valuable assets.
The perils of trade secret disclosure and theft warrant immediate attention. Trade secret laws impose steep damages for misuse, not only for losses but potentially for attorneys’ fees as well. And for willful and malicious misappropriation, courts can award “exemplary” damages in an amount up to double the underlying damages award. However, the biggest consequence can mean game over — an injunction can prohibit a business from use of materials belonging to a prior trade secret owner. In the reverse scenario, if a company allows trade secret disclosure, the trade secret asset may be lost for good.