Software development and implementation is critical to the growth of a company’s innovation program. The source code is software development is a valuable trade secret and is transferable easily through varied mediums. This is a challenging concern for trade secret – software owners. Challenging issues for intellectual property owners and the pursuit of prosecuting trade secret theft start when judges still need to look at a dictionary in order to help them understand what source code is and how it is electronically transferable, despite not being able to physically touch it, and how arcane are some laws when source code issues arise in court. The additional difficulty is that corporate espionage seeking business technological information is all too common and it is rising.
Companies need to address their internal policies addressing how a trade secret is defined and how it will be required to be managed within the company. As companies pursue their software development programs, key points of interest are needed to be addressed, i.e., definition, handling, management, distribution within the company, testing, records results, etc. The method by which a software initiative commences is important in so far as it establishes the role of the contributors within the company end their rights and obligations regarding disclosure of the product, sharing, copying, and the obligation not to compete.