• 益思團隊

Step by Step建立企業英文的NDA範本(三)

Updated: Feb 5

新書上市-從NDA到營業秘密管理


◎賴文智律師


接下來我們就來談談從透過網路挑選而來的NDA文稿,客製化成企業所需的NDA範本,原則上是帶領大家看英文的NDA條款,了解意思之後,說明各條款可能有的「變化」及企業可能的需求,剩下的就是英文的問題,那就只能靠讀者自己啦!


一、NDA開頭的序文


不少英文合約在締約雙方當事人的說明之下,會有合約的序文(Recitals)。最常看到的開頭就是Whereas,所以,也常被稱為Whereas條款。主要是在先對於締約的背景作一個事實的交待。有部分的NDA會在Whereas條款中說明雙方揭露機密資訊的目的,甚至是機密資訊的定義。考量到英美契約法中有關於約因的要求,通常我們還是建議選擇有Whereas條款的文稿作為企業的NDA例稿比較好,但應該簡單一點、保留彈性,不要寫得太複雜,以適用於大多數的情形。

WHEREAS, the Parties have agreed that they may disclose Confidential Information to each other (and to specified third parties) in relation to the Business Purpose under the conditions of confidentiality set out in this Agreement.

NOW, THEREFORE, in consideration of the mutual covenants and obligations contained in this Agreement, the Parties agree as follows:


上述這樣的描述,把雙方簽署NDA揭露機密資訊的商業目的(Business Purpose)放在NDA的本文中填寫,Confidential Information也用大寫呈現預告後續本文中會有定義,是比較簡短、有彈性的表達方式,值得讀者們學習。


二、機密資訊的定義


NDA一般對於機密資訊定義的寫法,大概分成二大類,第一種是把機密資訊定義寫得非常廣,幾乎就是包山包海,只要是未經公開的資訊或是明確列出來的資訊類型都是機密資訊(可能之後會再由保密義務的限制去做限縮),第二種就是把機密資訊定義限於必須要標示或告知屬於「機密」的才算是機密資訊。


二種寫法各有優劣,前者的問題在於看起來被保護的「機密資訊」範圍很廣,但實際上到底什麼樣的資訊是應該被保護的,反而不容易「明確化」,也會造成營業秘密管理在執行上的困擾;後者的問題在於企業最好有營業秘密管理制度的搭配,否則,如果實際執行的同仁沒有將應該保密的資訊做適當的「機密」標示或告知,可能導致原應保密的機密資訊喪失秘密性,但好處則在於雙方都很清楚什麼是要保密的機密資訊,比較不容易起爭執。


第一種的機密資訊的定義,下述的舉例看起來是不是覺得很完整呢?

The Confidential Information disclosed under this Agreement (“Confidential Information”) is described generally as any and all current and future product information, financial, technical, commercial, and other business information including, but not limited to financial, or other information of the Disclosing Party (whether written or oral), including, without limitation, all information, notes, client lists and records, reports, analyses, financial statements, compilations, studies, forms, business or management methods, marketing data, fee schedules, information technology systems and programs, projections, forecasts or trade secrets of the Disclosing Party, whether or not such Confidential Information is disclosed or otherwise made available to the Receiving Party by the Disclosing Party pursuant to this Agreement. (attach separate page if necessary)


是不是覺得這樣的寫法雖然很寬,但有點不合理?對了,就是這樣寫好像不管是不是「機密」,都變成機密資訊啦!一般來說,機密資訊的定義如果寫得這麼寬的話,通常還會在其後的條款中,加上已經屬於公知的資訊等,不會受到保密義務的拘束,這樣整個前後對照才會合理,不致引人笑話。另外一種變形的寫法,則是直接在定義中將「非公開」列成要件,這樣直接看「機密資訊」的定義本身就比較合理。

The term “Confidential Information” as used in this Agreement means information disclosed by the disclosing party (“Disclosing Party”) to the receiving party (the “Receiving Party”) which is non-public, proprietary and/or confidential in nature, whether provided in writing, orally, visually, electronically or by other means. The term “Confidential Information” includes, but is not limited to, (i) know-how, trade secrets, tools, methods, methodologies, techniques, designs, specifications, computer source code, partner or customer lists and information, marketing plans, personnel information, financial information, business strategies, and information relating to released or unreleased software, hardware or technology; (ii) information received by the Disclosing Party from third parties under confidential conditions which information is identified by the Disclosing Party as being subject to such conditions.


第二種的機密資訊定義的寫法,則看起來機密資訊的範圍會比較明確,即必須是有標示「機密」或在揭露時指定該等資訊應予保密,才屬於NDA中接受方應予保密的「機密資訊」,例如下方的寫法:


For purposes of this Agreement, the term "Confidential Information" shall mean any and all technical and non-technical information including but not limited to business plans, techniques, sketches, drawings, models, inventions, know-how, processes, apparatus, equipment, algorithms, software programs, software source documents, and formulae related to current and future proposed products and services of each of the Parties, and includes, without limitation, their respective information concerning research, experimental work, development, design details and specifications, engineering, financial information, procurement requirements, purchasing, manufacturing, customer lists, business forecasts, sales and merchandising, and marketing plans and information. To be considered to be confidential, the Confidential Information must be (a) marked “confidential” at the time of disclosure or (b) if orally disclosed, designated as confidential at the time of disclosure.


這類對機密資訊定義比較嚴的條款,通常使用在雙向保密的NDA中,因為單向保密的NDA,通常提供例稿的一方會覺得應列入保密範圍的「機密資訊」是「多多益善」。至於雙向保密的NDA,採取這二種定義寫法的NDA例稿其實都不少,以筆者過去審閱NDA的經驗,第一種寫法的比例還是比較高一些,這也可以看得出企業撰擬NDA時,通常是本著「寧可錯殺,不可放過」的心態,但恐怕也是反映出絕大多數的企業都沒有實施營業秘密管理的制度,因為如果實際實施的話,就會知道第一種定義下的機密資訊,只能很籠統地請員工把相關往來的資訊全部歸檔當作保密的範圍,但對內或對外揭露資訊時,又往往很難遵守嚴格保密的要求,最後就會造成保密不受重視,反而造成營業秘密管理的難題。怎麼選,就交給讀者自行決定啦!


糟糕,原先預期四、五篇要介紹完,現在在介紹到定義而已,這篇就超過預定篇幅太多啦!


請一併參閱:

新創公司營業秘密管理產品包 NTD 25,000

Step by Step建立企業英文的NDA範本(一)

Step by Step建立企業英文的NDA範本(二)

Step by Step建立企業英文的NDA範本(三)

Step by Step建立企業英文的NDA範本(四)

Step by Step建立企業英文的NDA範本(五)

Step by Step建立企業英文的NDA範本(六)

Step by Step建立企業英文的NDA範本(七)

Step by Step建立企業英文的NDA範本(八)

營業秘密盤點的方法

客戶提供制式的保密協議書,該注意哪些重點?

保密協議書中,該用「營業秘密」還是「機密資訊」?


圖文不符.Photo by 蕭家捷


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