Apply: Trade Secret Theft Study

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The purpose of this assignment is to determine when business assets may constitute intellectual property (IP), to analyze when an IP theft has occurred and possible remedies for IP theft, and to assess the importance of protecting and enforcing IP rights in a business setting.

Read the following scenario.

Futuretek sells high-tech computer chips and software to smartphone manufacturers worldwide. Futuretek maintains two software databases: one containing Futuretek’s customer list with nonpublic contact information for key personnel, and the other containing customer purchasing trends. The information in the two databases is available for employees to view and use in connection with their job duties.

Dana is a computer programmer for Futuretek. Dana plans to run her own company one day and design and sell her own computer chips to smartphone companies. As an employee, she has access to the two databases containing Futuretek’s key purchaser and purchasing trends information.

Dana decides to leave Futuretek and start her own computer chip business. Before she leaves, she makes a copy of the two databases on a portable hard drive. Dana uses the information to contact Futuretek’s customers and offer them cheaper, but comparable, computer chips manufactured by Dana’s new company, SmartChip.

Futuretek becomes aware of Dana’s actions and asks you, the chief operations officer, for advice and recommendations on what to do.

In a 5- to 10-slide Microsoft® PowerPoint® or Prezi® presentation, complete the following:

  • Determine whether Dana has taken Futuretek’s intellectual property (IP), and if so, describe the type(s) of IP that was taken.
  • Explain any civil actions in tort or criminal actions that may be brought against Dana or SmartChip.
  • Assume Futuretek sues SmartChip, and Futuretek wins the lawsuit. Recommend ethical policies that SmartChip can put into place to prevent future legal claims and litigation against the company.
  • Recommend risk management procedures that Futuretek can implement to avoid or limit this type of activity from happening to the company in the future.

Cite a minimum of two references according to APA guidelines.

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