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The Software IP Detective’s Handbook: Measurement, Comparison, and Infringement Detection by Bob Zeidman

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24. Detecting Trade Secret Theft

In this chapter I discuss techniques for detecting whether a program incorporates another’s trade secret. In many respects trade secret theft detection is more difficult than copyright infringement detection or patent infringement detection. Like patents, trade secrets can cover broad technologies and categories of software, or they can cover a small individual function within a program. Unlike patents, trade secrets require that the owner’s code meet the three requirements for being a trade secret:

  1. It is not generally known to the public.
  2. It confers some sort of economic benefit on its holder, where the benefit results from not being known to the public.
  3. The owner of the trade secret makes reasonable efforts ...

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