What is Intellectual Property? (IP)
Intellectual property (IP) represents creations of the mind or intellect that can be legally owned. IP laws allow for protection through patents, trade marks, copyright, designs, circuit layouts, and plant breeder's rights. Almost every business has some form of IP that they need to protect.
Ideas and unique creations can exist in every business. They're important for long term financial success and can make you more competitive than your rivals. But how do you stop competitors from copying your most valuable asset?
In most cases you must formally register your IP. However, automatic protection is given to copyrights, circuit layout rights, confidential information and trade secrets.
IP Australia is the federal government agency responsible for granting rights in patents, trade marks and designs. If you are considering the importance of IP in your business, the Intellectual Property Explorer tool is a useful starting point.
Recent Intellectual Property news
In part three of our Business names and numbers series, we will be looking at trade marks - what they are, the benefits of having them, and how you can use them in your business.