Intellectual property inventory checklist

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Use this checklist to explore the types of intellectual property you could exploit.

Do not include intangibles that are licensed from or owned by other companies!

Intellectual property inventory checklist
Holding Yes No IP to consider Actions to considerFootnote *
Advertising or signage Trademark
Copyright
Include an indication of copyright and/or trademark rights
Algorithm Trade secret Require NDAsFootnote 2 or do not disclose!
Book, magazine, newsletter or manual Copyright Include a copyright statement in a prominent location (year of first publication, owner, ©)
Business, product or service name Trademark Include an indication of trademark rights
Customer list or data Trade secret
Copyright
Require NDAs or do not disclose!
Include a copyright statement if it is a compilation
Domain name Trademark Search trademark databases to ensure your domain name is not someone else's trademark
Logo or symbol Trademark Include an indication of trademark rights
Mobile app Copyright
Industrial design
Include a copyright statement on your app or download site Industrial design
Maintain confidentiality until filing design registration for your graphical user interface; use NDAs
New or improved machine or device Patent Maintain confidentiality until a patent application is filed; use NDAs
New or improved process or chemical compound Patent Maintain confidentiality until a patent application is filed; use NDAs
Packaging Industrial design
Trademark

Maintain confidentiality until filing design registration; use NDAs
Include an indication of trademark rights

Photographs or illustrations Copyright
Industrial design
Include a copyright statement in a prominent location (year of first publication, owner, ©)
Maintain confidentiality until filing design registration if applied on a finished article; use NDAs
Secret recipe, process or formula Trade secret Use NDAs; or if it can be easily reverse-engineered, seek patent protection!
Slogan Trademark Include an indication of trademark rights
Software Copyright
Industrial design
Patent
Include a copyright statement in a prominent location (year of first publication, owner, ©)
Maintain confidentiality until filing design registration for your graphical user interface; use NDAs
Ask the Canadian Intellectual Property Office for information on software-related patents (related concepts)
Establish ownership with suppliers or clients through written agreement
Training materials Copyright Include a copyright statement in a prominent location (year of first publication, owner, ©)
Shape of a product Industrial design Maintain confidentiality until filing for design registration; use NDAs
Website Copyright
Industrial design
Include a copyright statement in a prominent location (year of first publication, owner, ©)
Maintain confidentiality until filing design registration for graphical user interface; use NDAs

Visit Canada.ca/intellectualproperty for more information on IP.

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