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How to protect intellectual property?
Intellectual property (IP) wasn’t a big deal in the past. However, with information more accessible and easier to distribute today due to technology, safeguarding your creations and works from infringers, copycats, and thieves has become vital to any business.
Intellectual property covers any original ideas, designs, discoveries, inventions and creative work produced by an individual or group. Copyright, trademark, patent and design are few of the most common types of IP protection.
IP Protection is necessary not only to protect innovations but also as a means to incentivize the creator or owner of the intellectual property by allowing them the rights to profit from the said innovation to exclusion of all other for a definite period of time. An organization that owns IP can monetize the same through its own processes and also by allowing external parties to utilize the IP by entering into agreements for licensing and royalty rights.
Register and Protect your intellectual property rights:
The first step to take in term of IP protection is to ensure that you are registering your IP within the territory of its use.
An original intellectual work in literary, arts of scientific area whatever its description, form of expression, significance or purpose is protected under the Copyright law in the UAE. The ministry of economy in the UAE allows copyright registration and once approved the copyright remains valid for the entire lifetime of the owner and plus fifty (50) years following the death.
Trademarks constitute any distinctive marks such as names, letters, figures, logos, titles hallmarks, pictures, patterns, sound mark, words that are used or intended to be used to distinguish a goods, products or services. The ministry of economy in the UAE allows trademark registration and once granted the right exists for 10 (ten) years duration and can be renewed for further time period.
Patent protection and registration is allowed for any new invention that constitutes an innovate step or an improvement on an existing invention and has utility, industrial application in different fields of technology. The International Centre for Patent Registration (ICPR) under Ministry of Economy is the competent authority to register patents in the UAE. Once granted a patent is valid for a time period of twenty years from the date of filing.
When planning to protect the IP of your business , apart from initiating the registration of your IP, you should also consider additional steps such as incorporating confidentially and non-disclosure agreements, domain name protection and also consider investing in technology to provide you with methods to protect the trade secrets that make your business unique. Proceeding with the registration of your IP in the UAE at the earliest and ensuring its continuous use is critical to ensure maximum protection of your IP and to be able to claim priority right over others.