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Can I Protect My Business From Employees Misusing Confidential Information?

Employment  Law | Jersey Business Legal Services

One of the biggest risks for Jersey businesses is an employee leaving your business choosing to work for a competitor and taking with them confidential information.

As a business owner or director you do need to consider how to protect confidential information and ensure that this does not disappear at the same time the employee does.  It is fair to say that  the misuse of confidential documents and or processes to a competitor could impact upon your business and unfortunately is somewhat prevalent.

Under Jersey law, employees are subject to an implied duty of confidentiality.  However employers should not rely purely on this as a protection, as it is unlikely to be sufficient.  There are a number of points you should consider with regard to confidential information.

First and foremost, you need to clarify as part of your business review what information is considered confidential and what is not.  Keep your confidential information separate from the non-confidential information to avoid any confusions.

Secondly, if you need to share or disclose confidential information with an employee inform the employee in writing that the subject matter and the documents and or information provided is confidential.  Keep an audit trail.

Thirdly, check your employment contracts to ensure that the employee to whom you are disclosing confidential information to has a confidentiality agreement contained therein.  You should have also contained a restrictive covenant clause in their contract.  If not, you should request the employee signs an additional non-disclosure agreement before providing such information.

Finally, while all of the above will assist the most effective way to ensure your confidential information is not misused is to restrict access.  While stating the obvious the more people are aware of such information the more likely it is that this information will be misused.

For advice, assistance or further information please do not hesitate to call 630530 or email us on businesslaw@parslowsjersey.com

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