Intellectual property and new technologies law

Intellectual property encompasses industrial property (patents, plant variety rights, semiconductor topography, trademarks, designs and models), as well as literary and artistic property (copyright and neighbouring rights).

Industrial property protects and enhances inventions, innovation and creation. Through copyright, literary and artistic property also offers recognised protection for the design of computer software. In this way, new technologies law has gradually become associated with intellectual property law.

In practicing new technologies law, our teams have started focusing on data protection for a number of years now. Data protection poses a real challenge for companies, going beyond its significance in the protection of individual liberties. These areas require increasingly cross-disciplinary skills – skills that our firm is able to offer.

Above and beyond piracy issues, intellectual property protection is also closely linked to various aspects of commercial and business law (unfair competition, parasitic copying, abusive or sudden termination of established commercial relationships, etc.), European law, contract law, and so on. It requires acting very early on in the creative or project process, since protection may determine the fate of the design or project in question – not disclosing inventions prior to properly protecting them by filing a patent, studying existing designs and available rights before marketing a product or the online publication of manufactured products, to cite just a few examples.

The data protection field also requires an increasingly developed transversal approach. The European General Data Protection Regulation (Regulation n° 2016/679, GDPR), adopted on 16 April 2016 and enforced in all member states on 25 May 2018, modifies the fundamentally declaratory approach of the previous regime in force in France since 1978.

Businesses how have to provide proof at any time that any personal data held (civil status, address, IBAN, bank details, email, telephone, various identifiers, biometric data, video recordings, etc.) have been collected with the consent of clients or employees, that these data are protected and that these data are, above all, unusable in the event of theft. Penalties have also been increased, and the French Data Protection authority (CNIL) can impose fines of up to 2% of worldwide turnover, or 4% in the event of a repeat offence.

A cross-disciplinary approach is now, more than ever, essential if we are to answer the myriad questions companies now have:

  • How do I deal with data protection from an organisational and legal stand point? What measures and structures should I put in place?
  • Is my HR department concerned?
  • Do I have to re-write all my contracts, or not?
  • What are the deadlines for compliance?
  • How do I make my staff more aware of the regulation and train them?
  • What data security measures should be put in place?
  • What requirements are there for subcontractors and suppliers?
  • How can I protect myself against possible fines?
  • Do all companies face the same penalties?
  • Are there any specific measures for small businesses?
  • And so on…

In Extenso Avocats is more than happy to assist, putting its skills at the service of clients.

GDPR Workplace

In Extenso Avocats has set up processes that are specifically adapted to its clients. We use GDPR Workplace, an application specially designed for small businesses and small and medium-sized enterprises to bring them rapidly into compliance as cost-efficiently as possible.