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Everything you need to know about protecting your business’s intellectual property - Blog

Everything you need to know about protecting your business’s intellectual property

Everything you need to know about protecting your business’s intellectual property

When starting out as a business owner, there are many things to sort out before you actually start producing work or services and generating income. You need to formulate your business model, secure a budget and rent premises, among other important things to do.

 

When you do start to generate income and provide services, it’s important to protect your intellectual property (IP) particularly if you don’t want someone else to copy you or use your ideas.

 

Register your name, logo and website name

 

There have been countless times where companies have obviously copied another business’s brand or logo and been successfully sued due to copyright laws. Some tips for protecting your IP:

 

  • Check your brand name and domain name is free to use
  • Register for trademark as soon as possible
  • Use a made-up name you have thought of on your own as this is the easiest way to ensure it’s available for you to trademark
  • For better results, incorporate your name into your logo
  • Use a trade mark agent if you need expert advice to ensure your IP is properly protected

 

Use a watermark on all of your images

 

If you’re a corporate business, this can help keep your images safe from being used indiscriminately. However, you do need to make sure the watermark doesn’t make the image look unappealing, so be sure to make it subtle. You can keep tabs on your images by typing your image URL into Google Search or using Tineye to see if anyone has used it.

 

Write up a policy

 

If you are creating new ideas and work all the time, it’s then integral you create a policy to protect your IP. Assess it as your business grows, so that you can ensure all work is properly protected, including all patents, designs, copyrights and domain names.

 

Prevent theft with secure contracts

 

Thievery can happen from within, where former employees may try to use your ideas elsewhere. Before hiring anyone, ensure employment contracts state your ownership of any intellectual property developed for the company.

 

The best way to approach protecting your company is from the inside out. Ensure all employees are familiar with your IP policy and are aware of the ramifications if IP has been stolen. For extra security, do make sure you regularly check your copyright work by performing searches online.

 

Featured image: Unsplash