What is Intellectual Property and How to Effectively Protect It?

Intellectual Property Definition

Intellectual property is defined as intellectual work that lawfully belongs to its creator or rights holder. Examples include written and literary works, art, photography, design, name (of products or brands), inventions, etc. Intellectual property can be acquired automatically, for example by writing a song but it can also be acquired by registration, that is by applying for a patent, product name, logo, etc. There is, however, another way to become intellectual property owner - purchasing the IP rights from the creator or past owner.

Types of Intellectual Property

There are several types of intellectual property. The main ones include:

Intellectual property is either protected automatically or through application for registration. Types of automatic protection of intellectual property include copyright and design right. Trade marks, patents and registered designs, on the other hand, are granted protection only after the application for registration has been approved.

How to Protect Your Intellectual Property?

To prevent your intellectual property being stolen or used/sold by a third party, make sure you have the right type of protection and keep in mind that you need to apply for some types (see Types of Intellectual Property Protection). If someone uses, sells or distributes your intellectual property anyway, you can take the following measures: