Saturday, August 13, 2011, 8/13/2011 12:22:00 PM

EU Trade Secrets Regulatory Gap


From Business Insider, an interesting article by New York City practitioner Joseph DeMarco, concerning the differences – he would say inadequacies – in trade secrets laws in the EU compared to the US.

According to DeMarco, most EU countries, with the possible exceptions of Germany and France, do not have criminal statutes that deal with trade secrets theft in the manner in which the US Economic Espionage Act covers such crimes. The UK, in particular, has considered but never adopted criminal laws for trade secrets misappropriation.

The result is a significant regulatory gap between protections afforded to trade secrets owners in the US and the EU. DeMarco posits that two recent cases prosecuted under US law – against former Societe Generale employee Samarth Agrawal and former Goldman Sachs employee Sergey Aleynikov – would not have been successfully prosecuted had those employees been based in an EU country.

Also inhibiting enforcement efforts, according to DeMarco, are EU privacy protections at work which limit surveillance.

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