Information travels faster than ever and can often be accessed with a few simple computer keystrokes. What’s more, once information is disseminated online, it may be impossible to “put the genie back in the bottle.” Proactive steps to protect and maintain confidential information include the following:
Employee Confidentiality Agreements. Safeguard trade secrets and proprietary information by requiring employees to sign employment agreements containing confidentiality and non-disclosure obligations.
Use NDAs During Negotiations. Non-disclosure agreements (“NDAs”) can help you explore business deals while protecting trade secrets from disclosure to the outside world.
Communicate Through Attorneys. The attorney-client privilege attaches to communications made by a client to an attorney for the purpose of obtaining legal advice and such communications are shielded from disclosure to third parties.
Out-of-Court Resolutions. Settlement agreements can be drafted to bar the parties from disclosing any information about the ultimate settlement that was reached (including monies paid) or about the underlying facts of the dispute.
Protective Orders. In cases that do proceed to court, protective orders can be used to protect sensitive documents and information required to be disclosed. Among other things, protective orders can be used to set parameters on the scope of document productions and define methods for protecting confidential or proprietary information.
While there is no foolproof way to guarantee confidentiality in every instance, careful planning and consultation with professionals can help to protect privacy rights and avoid unwanted disclosures.
Questions? Contact Wright Beamer at (248) 477-6300.