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admin | Category: Trace A Phone Number | 15.02.2014
Upon creating a useful invention, the innovator has two choices; either to go for patenting the invention or to keep it as a trade secret. They are not time bound; unlike patent which usually lasts till 20 years, trade secrets live as long as the confidentiality is maintained. The innovator need not adhere to the strict criteria that he would require to follow while going for patent protection. Trade secrets can be made immediately effective as they do not have to be registered anywhere.
This poses a certain advantage that trade secrets might have over protection under patent law. The international community seems to have awoken to the dire need for a codified provision to protect TR.
A general overview of the Draft Directive shows that the approach of these legislatures is to consolidate and harmonise the trade secret protection and to establish a certain regulatory mechanism.
Reverse engineering is essentially a concept where a product is broken down to understand how it was prepared, in order to create a copy of it.

What the current proposed framework lacks is a way to consolidate the practice of trade secrets along with the existing competition laws. There has been quite an intense debate over the past few years whether an innovator should go for protection under patent or under trade secrets. However the aspect of reverse engineering has been specifically excluded from the draft as an unfair trade practice.
With the technology available at our disposal today, reverse engineering has become especially an easy and efficient method to create a copy of an original product, even when there is not sufficient information available regarding its components.
The use of reverse engineering to obtain trade secret appears a major apprehension because there are no other intellectual protections available despite the considerable investments that have been made. Regulation of the experimentation via reverse engineering is an indispensible aspect under regulations governing trade secrets.
With development and technological overtake of the world, we see some major steps being taken towards codifying the laws governing Trade Secrets.
The Draft allows for freedom of competition because protection under trade secrets allots no exclusive rights to the inventor and hence the competitor is free to independently acquire the knowledge thus protected.

It is, however, very difficult to impose restrictions on reverse engineering without entering into a conflict with the right to fair competition and freedom to experiment under fair trade practices. Uninhibited freedoms to reconstruct a product, protected as trade secret, through the process reverse engineering is a major concern from the economic perspective. The European Commission feeling the need of the hour, submitted a Draft Directive to the European Council and the Parliament on 28th of November, 2013. Elsewhere, USA legislature has come up with two Bills, Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2014, introduced in the Senate on April 29, 2014 and The Trade Secrets Act of 2014 which was introduced in the House on July 29, 2014.

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