Is Taking Your Rolodex With You When You Quit Intellectual Property Theft?

from the um.--no. dept

A fear-mongering report coming out the UK is warning companies that employees are stealing a tremendous amount of intellectual property from companies as they leave, costing those companies billions each year. I always wonder about these types of studies, as it’s very difficult to justify the numbers they give, and are usually generated by making a bunch of questionable assumptions and multiplying. However, the details in this case are even worse. The main “intellectual property” being stolen? The employee’s own addressbook. Now, if you ask most employees, I’d bet they feel that their contacts are their’s, not the company’s anyway. However, the company that did this study says that’s not true, and your addressbook is actually a “corporate secret”. And people wonder why employees these days are using alternate email systems from the one their company tells them to use.

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Comments on “Is Taking Your Rolodex With You When You Quit Intellectual Property Theft?”

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Precision Blogger (user link) says:

Address book: IP?

Please bear in mind that for at least 40 years, a salesman’s list of contacts has been a TEXTBOOK example of company property that an employee cannot take away from the company. The sales person may have created all the contacts, but absent a specific contract term to the contrary, this IS company IP.

– The Precision Blogger

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