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2 J. High Tech. L. 1 (2003)

handle is hein.journals/jhtl2 and id is 1 raw text is: SUFFOLK UNIVERSITY LAW SCHOOL
VOL. II                                2003                                 No. 1
Cite as: 2 J. HIGH TECH. L. 1 (2003)
Federal Issues in Trade Secret Law'
Jerry Cohen, Esq.*
The general picture of trade secret law is that it is governed by state law as
summarized in Restatement of Torts' and Restatement of Unfair Competition
(Third)2 and codified in more or less uniform         state enactments based on the
Uniform Trade Secrets Act.3 The American Bar Association's Section of
Intellectual Property soundly rejected a proposal for a preemptive federal trade
secrets statute at its 1992 meeting in San Francisco.           Yet, long prior to the
1992 meeting, and at an accelerating pace thereafter, there have been several
areas of federal relevance established in the law and practice of trade secret
Copyright @ 2003 Jerry Cohen
* The author acknowledges the valuable assistance of William M. Simmons, Esq., Of-Counsel to
Perkins, Smith & Cohen, LLP, Boston, Massachusetts, in preparation of this paper. This paper was presented
at Suffolk University Law School Center For Advanced Legal Studies, Trade Secrets Seminar, Friday, March
14, 2003 (Co-Sponsored with Boston Patent Law Association). Jerry Cohen, Esq., Perkins, Smith & Cohen,
LLP, Boston, Massachusetts, jcohen@pscboston.con
1. RESTATEMENT (FIRST) OF TORTS § 757 cm. b (1982). Restatement drafters defined trade secrets, in
part, as consisting of any formula, pattern, device or compilation of information which is used in one's
business, and which gives him an opportunity to obtain an advantage over competitors who do not know or use
it. Id. Among the illustrative list of uses includes a formula for a chemical compound, a process of
manufacturing, treating or preserving materials, a pattern for a machine or other device, or a list of customers.
2. RESTATEMENT (THIRD) OF UNFAIR COMPETITION § 39 (1995) (defining a trade secret as any
information that can be used in the operation of a business or other enterprise and that is sufficiently valuable
and secret to afford as actual or potential economic advantage over others).
3. 18 U.S.C. § 1905 (2000).
4. Annual Report, 1992-93 A.B.A. SEC. IPL 300-09 (rejecting resolution 410 previously introduced,
debated and defeated).
Journal of High Technology Law - Volume II Number 1
Copyright © 2003 Journal of High Technology Law. All Rights Reserved. ISSN 1536-7983

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