EU Trade Secrets Directive comes into force

Implementation date: Mid-2018

The EU Trade Secrets Directive introduces an EU-wide definition of "trade secret" as information that is secret, has commercial value because it is secret, and has been subject to reasonable steps by the holder of the information to keep it secret. The Directive provides protection against the unlawful acquisition, use or disclosure of a trade secret or other conduct contrary to "honest commercial practices".

Whistleblowers are excluded from liability where disclosure of a trade secret serves the public interest. Member states have two years from the date of adoption of the Directive to implement it.