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Confidential and Industrial Secret Information

By: Jaime Israel Davila Gomez, Attorney

In Mexico, companies can generate or obtain all kinds of information, as a result of the activities they develop. Some of this information may have the character of confidential or sensitive, involving or risks for companies in case of obtaining general knowledge or competitive advantages that have an interest in protecting and safeguarding it.

In this sense, there are crimes related to providing, without authorization of the owner of the information, in addition to the damages that may be incurred by those who carry out these illegal activities. For employees, it can also involve a justified cause so that the employer can terminate the relationship without any responsibility.

From an Industrial Property point of view, there is a specific figure called Industrial Secret whose protection is derived from the fact that in Industrial Property Law there are behaviors listed that always involve a federal crime. We could say that the Industrial Secret is the type of confidential information in the Mexican system that requires more conditions to be protected. In general, it can be said that these are the conditions:

1) You have to deal with information that the company treats as confidential and that informs those who handle it;

2) this information must represent a competitive or economic advantage;

3) this information must be stored in physical or digital media.

The major consideration that companies must have (whether they are natural or legal persons) is that there is no record or procedure in Mexico that can be carried out to protect the Industrial Secret, since its protection lies on being kept within the company or with and absolute control of the flow of this information through the corresponding confidentiality and non-disclosure contracts, both with workers, collaborators, partners, suppliers, etc.

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