Can a legal contract actually protect your intellectual property? It all depends on the strength of the legal contract as well as if the individual or the entity signing the contract completely understands the legal implications of violating the clauses in the contract as well as understanding the requirements stated by the contract.
Here are some of the reasons why legal contracts sometimes fail to fulfil their very purpose:
Obscure and undefined clauses
A legal contract is only as strong as the clauses that it holds. Obscure and undefined statements within the contract, such as the entity must ensure that all data is kept safeguarded forever, is not enough or practical. Even though, superfluous details are not essential, language that specifically outlines what data has to be safeguarded and outcomes for refusing to abide by these rules must be included. Together, the clauses of the legal contract must sufficiently depict all the details of the arrangement between the entities.
(Image Source: locklizard)
Another way of completely safeguarding information is to ensure that the party whom the information belongs to is understood by everybody. Since organisations do not publicly disclose their intellectual property, there are other ways to ensure that a declarative statement is made in a subtle manner to assert the organisation’s proprietary rights to information. For instance, with the help of document security, electronic watermarks can be imprinted on documents in order to make it apparent to whom the information belongs. Then, in the unlikely event that the document is misplaced in wrong hands, the ingrained watermark will supply apparent grounds of its origins. Although this might not be a clear-cut and foolproof measure of protecting classified data, the supplementary layer of protection along with other features of document protection security and the legal contract can provide an overall strengthened security approach.
Unique Points Remain Unexplained
One important aspect to consider including in the contract to fortify its potential of safeguarding classified information, bears on how data will be covered under specific environments. For instance, in the event that an employee exits the organisation while the legal contract is still in effect, the contract should explain the possibilities on how bringing back and releasing access to data must take place. If the legal contract does not address this, data preserved on a device may be taken and thus access to official accounts may not be readily removed. Under such conditions, even if the individual does not commit acts that are contrary to the legal contract, contents may still get illegally stolen or disseminated due to this lapse.
(Image Source: locklizard)
One of the most vital facets of a secure document security strategy is the employment of a technique that enciphers information when it is lying dormant and in transit. Information that has is securely hived in a virtual data room that employs document security and state-of-the-art encryption,will be protected from theft – any efforts from unauthorized users to retrieve the data will prove ineffectual as the content of the protected document will be jumbled and indecipherable. Hence, it is certainly important to invest in a data storage solution that offers this as a standard security feature.
Absence of additional protection
Sometimes, it isn’t the legal contract that fails to safeguard data as much as it is human fault. Although a legal contract serves to prevent people from doing the wrong thing, it also renders the organisation legal assistance, after data has been illegally misplaced. Thus, even the most ironclad legal contract in the world is primarily irrelevant if other protective methods are not executed to further secure information.
To completely safeguard intellectual property classified data, documents must be secured in a virtual data room that employs multifactor access measures and other procedures such as limiting access and distribution of the documents, vigilantly tracking all movements of the classified information and more.
When security measures are in place, then in the event that even one is rendered ineffective, the other measures will hopefully obstruct or eliminate any additional access.