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Trade secret

Trade secrets include any valuable business information that derives its value from secrecy.

In Canada, there is no formal intellectual property process for protecting a trade secret. To protect and benefit from trade secrets, a business must:

  • Obtain business value from the secret
  • Keep the business information a secret
  • Take all possible measures to ensure that the business information remains a secret

Trade secrets can potentially last forever, provided the information actually remains a secret. Once the secret is out, the business value is usually lost and the trade secret protection ends.

For more information about trade secrets, visit the Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO) website.