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The Oxford Introductions to U.S. LawIntellectual Property$
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Daniel Hunter and Dennis Patterson

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780195340600

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:osobl/9780195340600.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 17 January 2022

Trade Secrets

Trade Secrets

(p.184) Five Trade Secrets
The Oxford Introductions to U.S. Law

Dan Hunter

Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses trade secrets which are considered statutory law in forty-seven states and territories and common law in others. Trade secrets prevent valuable information from being used by others. Two requirements are needed for a trade secret or information to stand in court: it must be economically valuable and the owner must have taken steps to protect the information. Although the states may differ in their approach to determining trade secrets, they use the Uniform Trade Secrets Act (the UTSA), the Restatement of Torts 757 and 758, or the Restatement (Third) of Unfair Competition. The chapter notes that in general, no affirmative defenses for trade secret law are strong. However, “negative” types of defenses can be used by the defendant, for example, when the plaintiff cannot clearly show misappropriation of information such as in group inventions or the discovery of an item from reading public journals and literature.

Keywords:   Uniform Trade Secrets Act, Restatement of Torts 757 and 758, unfair competition, trade secret

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