In today’s, modern world, intellectual property theft is surprisingly common. Many business owners make the mistake of thinking that because their company is small, their ideas are safe.
Unfortunately, that isn’t always the case. Intellectual property thieves don’t care about how large a company is, what they care about are the ideas they can steal. This is why it’s so important that regardless of business size, all business owners take the steps to protect their ideas.
To keep your ideas safe – your logos, designs, trademarks, etc., it is crucial that you take the steps to legally protect them.
Have a policy in place
The first thing you need to do is put a policy in place to protect your ideas. What you need to do is work with a specialist, to create a policy that will protect all your intellectual property.
It’s best to seek professional help – intellectual property services from London IP are ideal. Things like your designs, trademarks, patents, and domain names should all be included in the policy.
For all employees, ensure that there is a contract in place that states your ownership of any intellectual ideas.
Having contracts in place will help to prevent your employees and others you work with from stealing your ideas. Obviously, you want to trust your employees, but it is important that you adequately protect your ideas.
Check your idea is original
When you come up with what you think is a new idea, before taking things any further, make sure that it actually is an original idea. Just like you don’t want your ideas stolen, you don’t want to take someone else’s.
You can check that your idea is original by using trademark and patent searches to see if the idea is already taken.
Make sure to always keep evidence that a particular idea belongs to you, such as dated sketches or mind maps of ideas. It’s sad to think that you may have to prove an idea is your own, but it’s important that you have what you need if you do.
Protect your idea overseas
Don’t make the mistake of failing to protect your intellectual property overseas. Just like you should protect your intellectual property at home, you should also protect it abroad.
Protecting your ideas abroad can be quite complicated, so it’s best to get some professional advice.
Copyright your products
All of your products and ideas should be copyrighted, this is an absolute must. Make sure that before releasing any products or ideas to the media, that they are fully protected by copyright.
If you are unsure whether you materials are already copyrighted, consult a lawyer and find out. If not, copyright each of your products and ideas. To emphasize that you own a certain product, you can also add the copyright logo, along with your name and the date it was copyrighted.
As a business owner, your ideas are sacred. Your ideas are the basis for your business, and without them, your company would most probably fail. That is why it is so important that as a business owner, you take the proper steps to protect your intellectual property.