How to protect your amazing idea
You have an amazing idea you think will succeed, and you're ready to turn your visions into reality. The more you have thought about it, the more excited you get -- You want to tell the WHOLE world about your new business.
But wait! Is it wise to share your idea with complete strangers? What if someone decides to steal the idea after hearing it?
It is human nature to worry, but instead of losing sleep over it, here are eight ways to protect your ideas and make it harder for others to steal them.
Avoid oversharing of your idea
Know who you're talking to
Use legally binding contracts, e.g. Covenant Not to Compete (see below for more information. Also, be sure to consult an attorney with any legal document to guarantee accuracy and protection of your idea)
Apply for a Provisional Patent-- it can protect your idea up to one year
Copyright original works
Trademark a name
Create a paper trail of your idea
Establish mutually beneficial relationships with existing or potential competitors
Most successful entrepreneurs agree the best way to protect your idea is to execute your idea and go to market faster than anyone else. So don't wait and get going.
Additional information: “Covenants Not to Compete”
A “covenant not to compete” (CNC), or non-compete contract, is governed by state rather than federal law, and the general term covers these three aspects.
Non-compete: Traditional non-competes prohibit the employee from joining competing business(es) identified either by name or description, during a specified period of time and within a defined geographical area.
Non-solicitation: Non-solicitation agreements bar approaching customers, poaching employees and/or wooing suppliers of the former employer.
Non-disclosure: Confidentiality agreements (aka non-disclosure agreement) prohibit using or revealing information the former employer wants to keep private, which may be product formulations, client lists, marketing plans or some other proprietary information.
"Don't let your fear of what could happen make nothing happen." -- Doe Zantamata