Identifying, preserving, and defending trade secrets

David E. Warden, Joe Phillips

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A discussion dealing with the trade secrets in the context of U.S. law is presented. Trade secrets are conceptual ideas, formulas, processes, product designs, customer lists, marketing plans, price lists, supplier lists, business policies, procedure manuals, and other commercial intangibles. A trade secret comes into existence when the following criterias are met: the information has some economic value, the information cannot be easily discovered by lawful means, and the trade secret's owner has taken reasonable steps to ensure secrecy. Now, the employee's legal obligations to keep trade secrets confidential arise through contracts not to compete, confidentiality agreements, and the duties inherent in the employer/employee relationship. If in the case where a trade secret has been disclosed, an employer can seek injunctive relief or damages against the disclosure. It is important therefore for the employer to make several steps when he learns that an employee is quitting or being terminated so as to avoid such disclosure.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)42-43+45-46
JournalJPT, Journal of Petroleum Technology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2006 May

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Fuel Technology
  • Industrial relations
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Strategy and Management


Dive into the research topics of 'Identifying, preserving, and defending trade secrets'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this