Companies Use Defend Trade Secrets Act to Combat Economic Espionage
WASHINGTON—A year after the Defend Trade Secrets Act (DTSA) became law, companies are availing themselves of the ability to protect their formulas, processes and other trade secrets in the federal courts. Introduced in the House by Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.), the DTSA guards the trade secrets of U.S. companies—valued at roughly $5 trillion—which are often the target of economic espionage at the hands of foreign interests, including China.
According to the National Law Review and other publications, companies are turning to the DTSA for redress when competing firms or foreign governments steal their intellectual property.
“Last year, Republicans were able to produce the 114th Congress’ most significant piece of legislation protecting intellectual property rights, the Defend Trade Secrets Act. Innovation fuels our economy, and we can’t allow bad actors at home or abroad to appropriate the trade secrets of hardworking Americans.
“The Defend Trade Secrets Act is already protecting intellectual property rights against those who would undermine our economy, and I know that conservatives will continue to lead in this policy space,” said Collins.
The law created a uniform standard for the misappropriation of trade secrets and provides plaintiffs with a way to work across state and national boundaries through civil federal courts. The first verdict in a DTSA case, Dalmatia Import Group, Inc. v. FoodMatch, Inc. et al., awarded $500,000 in damages based on stolen trade secrets, and the number of DTSA cases is growing.