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Preserving and securing your intellectual property is crucial in the information age we live in. But how do you protect it?

To sum it all up, algorithms are important. It's important to know about fibre optics, straight pathways and that tower-to-tower communication is better than underground communication – data flows faster above ground. It's all about knowing about the word wide web, or using it for business endeavours, such as managing the security of an idea.

Prior to this era, companies would make hundreds of excess calls a day in order to learn things and extract information that would help them proceed.

With the advent of the internet, however, it's now easier than ever to access almost any kind of idea or information, which is available instantly. Gone is the time when a manuscript would sit gathering dust in an attic.

The need to protect your ideas are also more crucial, as you can’t actually protect an idea. You can, however, protect what you do with it. For example, you can’t protect an idea for a book, but if you write it, you can protect the words you’ve written.

The traditional method of posting an unopened letter to yourself in order to protect your intellectual property is, contrary to popular belief, not legally binding. This proves a worrying thought as thousands still use self-sent messages despite the increase of hackers waiting to tap into your email.

Last year in the UK alone, £9.2bn was lost to intellectual property theft, according to The IdeaSafe. The victims were often individuals who couldn't afford traditional intellectual property protection.

So, in what ways can you secure your intellectual property?

  • Patent what is important to you;
  • Educate your team on the basics of trademarks, copyrights, patents and trade secrets;
  • Invest early on;
  • Work with an attorney who specialises in intellectual property and ask for a fixed rate to file; and
  • Conduct an audit to identify your registered and unregistered trademarks.

Another option is to work with companies, such as The IdeaSafe, who are aiming to mark a turning point in intellectual property protection, particularly for individuals and small businesses, by offering a legally endorsed option to protect an idea.

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