Intellectual Property (IP) refers to exclusive rights associated to creations of the mind. Under IP law, intangible assets such as inventions, literary and artistic work, designs, and phrases, symbols and images can be protected. This protection can be obtained thanks to different kinds of IP rights (for more information go to section Which kind of IP rights?) like patents, trademark, designs, copyright, and enables their owner to earn recognition or financial benefit from their creation or invention.
The right to prevent someone from affixing a mark to goods or using it in conjunction with goods or services without the permission of its holder. Trade Mark is primarily European English usage, Trademark North-American English
A set of exclusive rights granted by law to applicants for inventions that are new, inventive and industrially applicable.
Registered designs are a form of IP protection that falls between patents and copyrights. These rights essentially protect the aesthetic aspects of productdesign rather than functional technical aspects.
Any confidential business information which provides an enterprise a competitive edge may be considered a trade secret. Trade secrets encompass manufacturing or industrial secrets and commercial secrets. The unauthorized use of such information by persons other than the holder is regarded as an unfair practice and a violation of the trade secret. Depending on the legal sys- tem, the protection of trade secrets forms part of the ge- neral concept of protection against unfair competition or is based on specific provisions or case law on the protection of confidential information.
Copyright is the exclusive legal right granted to the author of a literary, musical, artistic or scientific work to publish, reproduce, sell or distribute said work or to authorise a third party to do so. Copyright protection covers the expression of ideas, not ideas or concepts themselves.
Like a patent, a Utility Model (UM) is a set of rights granted for an invention for a limited period of time, during which UM holders can commercially exploit their inventions on an exclusive basis. The terms and conditions for granting UMs are different from those for “traditional” patents. For example, UMs are issued for a shorter duration (7 to 10 years) and, at most offices, UM applications are granted without substantive examination. The procedures for granting UM rights are governed by the rules and regulations of national IP offices, and rights are limited to the jurisdiction of the issuing authority.