Can You Protect Your Intellectual Property In The Cloud?

by Ladyblogger on July 8, 2012

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(US Law and general information) As the Internet has continued to take over virtually every aspect of modern business interactions, more and more business owners are beginning to see the value in protecting their intellectual property rights from aspiring criminals. The fact is, intellectual property rights are currently a hotly contested legal issue, and the entire idea of online intellectual property rights continues to be debated in various courts throughout the world.

Thankfully, business owners can turn to cloud computing for help in protecting their intellectual property rights, both online and off. Cloud services providers are great options for business owners who want to be able to freely display and transfer data without the threat of infringement, and many such providers also offer amazing connectivity solutions for businesses of all sizes. If you’re thinking of protecting your intellectual property using cloud services, here are a few things to consider:

1.) Get It in Writing

Anytime you partner with a service provider, it is imperative that you get the terms of service in writing. When it comes to protecting your intellectual property, this step is even more important, as having written terms will be beneficial in the event of infringement. A cloud computing services provider should always agree to assume liability for any system, network, platform or cloud breach, and this liability should extend to paying damages in the event that your intellectual property rights are violated. If a provider fails to agree to these terms, then you will need clear evidence as to what link within your cloud has allowed a failure or breach of security, and this may prove difficult to display in court.

2.) Consult with an Attorney

Before you enter into any contract with a cloud computing services provider, you may also want to speak with an attorney who specializes in intellectual property cases. This will help you to build a strong, long-term protection strategy for your intellectual property regarding cloud computing, and it will also help your business to make smart choices regarding service providers. In the event that a cloud computing services provider does allow your intellectual property to be infringed upon, a qualified and experienced intellectual property rights attorney will be able to help you and your company navigate the legal process of seeking damages.

3.) Understand Your Cloud

Essentially, cloud computing is simply a buzzword for a network. As such, anytime that you use cloud computing, you need to understand exactly where your intellectual property will be stored and displayed, as well as what rights you will be giving up when users access your intellectual property. In addition, it’s important to know the security measures that each link of your cloud will put in place to protect your rights. While your services provider should be able to explain the security and privacy policies of each link within your cloud, you may also need to contact individual links personally for more information. If you’re ever unsure about a particular link or policy, never fear asking questions.

Finally, you need to know that cloud computing is an evolving technology. While the principle behind cloud computing is as old as the Internet itself, the ways in which this principle is being applied today are rapidly changing. When you couple this fact with the current legal debates regarding intellectual property, it’s important to always keep up with the latest in the cloud computing industry to keep your intellectual property rights intact.

Molly Henshaw is a law student living in the DC metro area. She is also a contributing author for the data service experts at QTS. They provide secure data storage to fit any business need!

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