Practical steps to protect information not only reduce risk but improve your prospects of enforcing protective clauses in court, if necessary.
clearly label confidential information as such
restrict access to confidential information and circulate only as needed, on a need-to-know-basis
ensure information security by securing physical and electronic documents by using locked cabinets, offices, password protection and encryption
keep a register of confidential information to monitor ownership and/or control
regularly train your employees on the importance of confidentiality and how to avoid the disclosure of commercially sensitive confidential information
adopt an Information security policy to set out your processes and rules for ensuring the security of your confidential information
When dealing with third parties, consider using a non-disclosure agreement (NDA). You can make your NDA using our One-way confidentiality agreement or Two-way confidentiality agreement. You can also use a Letter of confidentiality.
Stop employees from storing contacts and any business information on external sites, such as LinkedIn, as this makes information harder to protect. Consider doing this using a Social media policy.
Make sure not to breach an employee’s employment contract (eg by making a PILON without the contractual right to do so), as this can remove your right to enforce the contract altogether.
Act fast if you discover an ex-employee has breached confidential information restrictions (or other post-employment restrictions), as delaying may mean you lose the right to an 'injunction' (ie a court order preventing further breaches).